Large-scale habitat protection
The support of Arcadia, a charitable fund of Lisbet Rausing and Peter Baldwin, has also enabled Fauna & Flora to secure – and, importantly, transfer into local hands – some of the world’s most severely threatened habitats across a wide range of regions and ecosystems through an initiative known as Halcyon Land & Sea.
This fund was set up specifically to protect areas of exceptional conservation value at risk of destruction or degradation and also aims to build local and national capacity to manage and finance these sites over the long term, engaging the local community wherever possible. Some interventions now take the form of straightforward site management support, and the fund also stimulates local livelihood and enterprise initiatives that generate direct income for the surrounding communities.
Among many Halcyon Land & Sea success stories is that of Ol Pejeta Conservancy in northern Kenya, which was established in 2003 when Fauna & Flora purchased 36,420 hectares of land to protect critical migration corridors for wildlife including the black rhino. Ownership was subsequently transferred under a long-term management agreement to a Kenyan non-profit organisation.
Similarly, in Romania’s Carpathian Mountains, Fauna & Flora purchased a relatively small but strategically vital area of the country’s most important and threatened forest habitat and, working alongside our in-country partner Asociatia Zarand, we have since demonstrated how sympathetic forest management can enhance biodiversity.
Other examples of economically, biologically and culturally vital habitats that have been saved from destruction through direct intervention – with Halcyon Land & Sea support – include the botanically rich Flower Valley landscape at the southern tip of Africa, and the Golden Stream Corridor Preserve, a vital watershed in Belize, both of which are now managed by Fauna & Flora’s local partners.
In its first two decades, Halcyon Land & Sea enabled Fauna & Flora to directly secure some 9.5 million hectares of vital habitat that would otherwise have been irretrievably lost, and contributed to the conservation of nearly 56 million hectares, an area almost the size of Kenya.