Consisting of 180,365 hectares, Sapo National Park in Liberia houses a mosaic of distinctive flora and fauna, such as the critically endangered West African chimpanzee, the endangered pygmy hippopotamus, and the vulnerable African forest elephant.

Due to the forest being entirely located within the Upper Guinea forest ecosystem, one of the 34 most biologically rich and endangered terrestrial ecoregions in the world, the need to effectively manage the protected areas in this region cannot be overemphasised.

Alongside the Forestry Development Authority (FDA), FFI manages a biomonitoring programme where species distribution and population data and human-wildlife conflict data are collected and analysed to inform management action.

FFI is taking on a lead role in the development and revision of Sapo National Park management plans. By integrating biodiversity survey results with the results from recent social assessments conducted on communities surrounding the park, FFI is ensuring that the management plan reflects a systematic and realistic approach to targeting threats to biodiversity, involving the community in a participatory manner and empowering local stakeholders to take charge of their natural resources.

FFI is also working alongside the FDA to improve their law enforcement of park regulations through the introduction of more systematic patrol protocols and the building of necessary capacity and ranger abilities.

We are grateful for financial support from the Species Fund, the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) through its West Africa Biodiversity and Climate Change (WA BiCC) programme, the Arcus Foundation, US Fish and Wildlife Service and the Critical Ecosystem Partnership Fund.