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Species News from the Field

  • Capacity building highlights in 2015

    From 11th to 14th of August, Raphali Andriantsimanarilafy, reptiles lead researcher at Madagasikara Voakajy, followed a training Distance Sampling at the University of St Andrews in Scotland. The main objective of this training is to help researchers in the world working on population assessment to have a good knowledge on how to use and how work Distance software. Distance sampling is one method using point or line transect for collecting data in the field. Many researchers from different country or institutions working on different taxa attended this workshop. The training was given by the experts on Distance Sampling from the University of St Andrews. Back in Madagascar, he used (and will continue to use) his newly learned skills to analyse our existing data, and design future research on reptiles and other species within our organization. 


  • Herps team surveying the population structure, microhabitat and activities of Mantella cowanii

                    Mantella cowanii is classified as Endangered by the IUCN red list of threatened species due to its very restricted area of occupancy to a few sites. In addition to that, the species is mainly threatened by the habitat loss. The conservation efforts through the Action Plan Mantella cowanii (APMC) seem to be positive for the species has been down listed from Critically Endangered to Endangered in 2014.

  • Calumma tarzan


    Calumma tarzan, or Tarzan’s chameleon, was discovered in 2009 in the Anosibe An’Ala district.Subsequent research shows that this species is endemic to the district, where it is only know from three small forest fragments: near the village Tarzanville, Ambatofotsy forest and Ampotaka forest.


More News from the Field >>

New Publications

  • file iconThe supply of illegal tortoise meat to Toliara City, south-western Madagascar

    A range of endemic and protected vertebrate species from Madagascar are threatened by the demand for bushmeat. We report on the number of discarded carapaces from illegally killed Critically Endangered radiated tortoises Astrochelys radiata in an urban centre in south-west Madagascar. 

  • file iconHabitat use by the endemic Malagasy bat Hipposideros commersoni in a littoral forest

    We investigated habitat use by the endemic Malagasy bat Hipposideros commersoni in evergreen littoral rainforest during the wet season in 2006, in order to better inform conservation guidelines. We used radiotracking to locate roosting and foraging sites.

  • file iconBat News Winter 2015

    This winter in the UK (summer in Madagascar), the Bat News of Bat Conservation Trust features the Bats of Madagascar. Read the full article here (icon Bat News Winter 2015).

More Publications >>
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Mangabe: conserving the 'blue forest'
Mangabe rainforest is a site of international biodiversity importance. It also provides many essential natural products and associated services to the rural and urban communities in the district of Moramanga.  We are working with people to protect the priority areas within the forest and also to support local communities sustainably use natural resources. We hope that the Mangabe forest will become a protected area in the future and the first step towards achieving this was completed in 2008.

Mangabe forest, or the 'blue forest', covers approximately 40,000 ha in eastern Madagascar and is divided between two administrative distrcts, Moramanga in the north and Anosibe An'ala to the south. 

Mangabe forest is home to almost half of the world's breeding ponds for the golden frog according to recent studies on  High conservation priority sites for mantella frogs. We are now working with local communities to conserve the habitat at these breeding ponds in 23,000 ha of the northern section of the forest. The Mangabe forest is one of seven sites that we are assissting communities and government develop into a new protected areas. In addition to the focus on frogs, we are therefore involved in a number of other activities at the site, which include:

  • environmental education in primary schools
  • supporting alternative income projects for new womens' groups
  • encouraging the uptake of alternative farming methods for traditional crops
  • creating and supporting community associations to manage natural resources

In the long-term we hope that the Mangabe forest is awarded full protected areas status but of the type that permits sustainable use in all but the most sensitive areas and of all but the most protected or vulnerable species. This forest is very close to two main roads and the expanding urban center of Moramanga and needs to be managed wisely, with livelihoods and development objectives in parallel with biodiversity protection.

We thank the donors below for currently funding for this project

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