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A Community Wildlife Management Model from Mount Cameroon

Research reports

The forest areas surrounding Mount Cameroon host some of the highest biodiversity in West Africa including many rare and endemic species of plants and animals. Wildlife populations are in decline, due to an increasing trade in bushmeat, as well as problems of forest encroachment from farmers and large-scale plantation development. In collaboration with forest authorities, the Mount Cameroon Project (MCP) has adopted a ìparticipatory biodiversity conservationî approach to wildlife management. It is working with local communities in two forest areas to develop a viable model for participatory and sustainable wildlife management appropriate to local needs in terms of use, capacity and resources. This has involved organising local groups and working with communities and government to develop systems for local wildlife management: hunting licenses, developing and allocating sustainable quotas, sanctions, monitoring and control. Other resource management groups are now seeking to emulate this model and to collaborate on a regional level to ensure effective control. Although developed together with the Ministry of Environment and Forests, some aspects of the model are not catered for within existing legislation. It is hoped that the model will serve to influence policy changes at national level so that realistic community management of wildlife can be achieved throughout Cameroon.

James Acworth, Henry Ekwoge, Ebwekoh M. Oíkah, Kristin B Olsen, Rose M Ongie, Charles Tako