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Bangor University helps government of Madagascar develop a strategy to tackle bushmeat hunting

Bushmeat hunting - the hunting of wild animals for food, is recognised as a major conservation issue across much of the tropics. However until recently the threat this poses to Madagascar’s wildlife, including its famous lemurs, was not widely recognised. Following three years of research by Bangor University with the Malagasy NGO Madagasikara Voakajy (funded by the UK government’s Darwin Initiative), there is now much more information on the extent of this problem and how it could be tackled.

Dr Julia Jones, Senior Lecturer in Conservation in the School of the Environment, Natural Resources and Geography, is in Madagascar attending a workshop organised by the Bangor University/ Madagasikara Voakajy bushmeat project to develop a national strategy to reduce hunting of protected species in Madagascar. The workshop was formally hosted by the Malagasy government’s Ministry of the Environment and attended by senior representatives of the ministry, NGOs, researchers and journalists. Also present was the project mascot ‘Lenary’ a dancing lemur.

Dr Jones says ‘Over the last three years our research has uncovered very worrying levels of hunting of protected species. We have investigated the reasons people hunt and the potential of different approaches to reduce hunting. Now it is time to translate research into action.’

Julie Razafimanahaka, director of the Malagasy NGO Madagasikara Voakjy said ‘We are delighted that the government and all the other partners working on conservation in Madagascar participated in the workshop. We all need to work together to tackle bushmeat and now we have a national strategy to guide us.’

Publication date: 29 May 2012