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Rwanda is a small, landlocked highland country in central Africa, famous for its mountain gorillas (Gorilla beringei beringei). The gorillas inhabit the Virungas, a spectacular range of volcanoes straddling the borders with the Democratic Republic of Congo and Uganda.
In addition to Volcanoes National Park, Rwanda has two other significant protected areas: Nyungwe National Park in the south-west and Akagera National Park in the east of the country. Nyungwe National Park is the largest contiguous block of ancient montane forest in the region and contains impressive biodiversity including 13 species of primate and around 300 species of birds including 24 species unique to the Albertine Rift
Akagera National Park s a scenic reserve containing a wide variety of species in three main habitats: mountain, savannah and wetland. Most of Rwanda is densely populated and little natural habitat or wildlife occurs outside the protected areas.
Fauna & Flora International’s (FFI) focus in Rwanda is on conservation of mountain gorillas. Initially we worked through the Mountain Gorilla Project in the 1980s and since 1991 through the International Gorilla Conservation Programme, (IGCP) a consortium of conservation organisations consisting of FFI, the World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF) and the African Wildlife Foundation (AWF).
IGCP works closely with closely with the Office Rwandaise du Tourisme et des Parcs Nationaux (ORTPN) of the Rwanda Tourism Board, at all levels from the local level to the transboundary policy level. It places special emphasis on working with communities around the Volcanoes National Park to protect mountain gorillas and bring benefits to local people.
Fewer than 720 mountain gorillas struggle to survive in Central Africa’s forests. The International Gorilla Conservation Programme, a partnership between Fauna & Flora International, the World Wide Fund for Nature and the African Wildlife Foundation, supports transboundary protected area authorities in three countries to improve conservation of gorillas and their mountain forest habitat. The IGCP also improves local livelihoods, helping to mitigate threats to this Critically Endangered species.
There are few animals on earth as strong as the mountain gorilla, or as fragile. Mountain gorillas, numbering approximately 780 total individuals, are found in only two locations on earth- Bwindi Impenetrable National Park in Uganda and the Virunga Massif (comprised of Volcanoes National Park in Rwanda, Mgahinga Gorilla National Park in Uganda, and Parc National de Virunga in the Democratic Republic of Congo). In 1991, Fauna & Flora International, in solidarity with the African Wildlife Foundation (AWF) and the…Read more