The Aspinall Foundation Has Started 2018 With Great Conservation Success
The Aspinall Foundation has some wonderful news for wildlife lovers and conservationists alike. At the start of the year, on January 5th to be exact, Port Lympne welcomed the birth of a male baby black rhino to first time mother Kisima. This is fantastic because the species is critically endangered plus he represents the fourth generation of black rhino born at Port Lympne and is the most recent addition to a lineage which includes his mother, grandmother and great grandmother all of whom were born at the Reserve and where they continue to live.
Celebrating the birth of greater bamboo lemurs in the wild
Black rhinos are not the only species which had new additions thanks to The Aspinall Foundation. The Foundation administers rainforest sites in Madagascar and it’s the time of year for new arrivals to the population of greater bamboo lemurs. So far there have been 79 births that have been reported and there are now 88 individuals at the super-group living at Ambalafary after 13 births. The group is now the largest population of greater bamboo lemurs. To get some perspective, the group has increased in size by six times since 2010 when there were only 14 members and it is now larger than the combined population of wild greater bamboo lemurs when Aspinall first arrived in Madagascar over ten years ago. The group is now 3 times larger than the global captive population of the species.
The spotted hyena returns to the Bateke Plateau National Park
It was believed that the spotted hyena went extinct two decades ago at the Bateke Plateau National Park which is a flagship conservation project managed by the Aspinall Foundation. However, after 20 years, for the first time, a lone spotted hyena was captured by a camera trap as it stalked through the forest. This is a fantastic development for the species which had disappeared because the area had lost its wildlife due to poaching. In 2015 a male lion was also photographed in the same area and its presence was celebrated globally at the time.
Species have returned thanks to the hard work of the Aspinall Foundation
The Aspinall Foundation has been working with conservation organisations and government agencies in Gabon since 1996. Since it became involved not only have large carnivores returned, but a wide variety of species including gorillas, chimps, antelopes, elephants, small cats and red river hogs have also made a return to the area. Tony King who is responsible for the Aspinall Foundations Conservation and Reintroduction efforts says the return of all these species is not just an indication of the success of their efforts which has required two decades of hard work, but it also serves and inspiration to maintain the reintroduction effort.