Protecting one of the last large populations of Forest Elephants and largest population of Western Lowland Gorillas

Timeframe: 2018
Country/Region: Republic of Congo
Partner: African Parks

The Odzala Kokoua National Park in the Republic of Congo covers 1’365’000 ha of pristine rain forest. The park harbours the last large population of forest elephants in Central Africa (about 6’200 individuals) and over 11’000 gorillas. The large size of the park comes with difficulty to establish infrastructures and a complexity with regards to community development. The neighbouring communities are poorly educated and have traditionally been surviving on poaching as corruption and a stagnant economy encourage illegal activities and trafficking. A serious human wildlife conflict has resulted in elephants moving around to the protected portions of the park and is compromising the good relations with the neighbouring communities.

Since 1992, the park has benefited extensively from financial and technical assistance of the European Union through various programs. In 2010, African Parks entered into a long-term partnership with the Congolese government to address the challenges of the park. Contribution from Fondation Segré, in the framework of the new MoU signed with African Parks, will allow to

  • Enhance law enforcement operation by maintain the patrols operational, providing infrastructures and transportation
  • Mitigation of human wildlife conflict trialling preventive measures and an insurance scheme
  • Develop tourism thanks to a thorough evaluation of the park’s potential
  • Maintain standard operations and good relations with local partner and communities