The Bulindi Chimpanzee Habitat Restoration Project is an afforestation project in western Uganda that aims to protect the remaining habitat of the Bulindi chimpanzees and support local village households.
The project is an afforestation project in western Uganda that aims to protect the remaining habitat of the Bulindi chimpanzees and support local village households. The project was established by our local NGO partner, BCCP (the Bulindi Chimpanzee and Community Project), led by Dr McLennan, in 2015, in response to the urgent conservation situation in the Hoima and Masindi districts, where over 300 wild chimpanzees survive in shrinking fragments of forest on agricultural land. This area is important for conservation as it is a corridor linking major chimpanzee populations in two large protected areas, the Budongo and Bugoma forests, each home to more than 500 chimpanzees.
Around 1.3 million indigenous trees have already been planted, and 3 million more trees will be planted over the next three years. In addition, owners of natural forests used by chimpanzees have been supported by contributing to the costs of their children's education on the condition that local forests are conserved.
While nature-based solutions are implemented in the field, a series of training is provided free of charge to the local people and farmers about conservation farming, new income sources, building, the use of more fuel-efficient stoves, water quality, the benefits of trees, erosion control, and leadership skills.
trees being planted
tonnes CO₂ to be captured
hectares to be restored
The project has a positive impact on local communities by helping them to conserve the forest, which is so critical to the survival of the chimpanzees. The project supports local households in key areas by investing in their children's education via a school sponsorship scheme and supporting small household projects, including house construction and coffee cash-cropping. The project will also provide households with energy-saving stoves and seedlings for woodlots which reduce pressure on remaining natural forests. Additionally, the project will construct village boreholes, providing villagers with access to clean water.
The project's approach is to work with local communities and households to find sustainable solutions that will benefit both the chimpanzees and the people. The project supports local households by providing them with energy-saving stoves and seedlings for woodlots which reduce pressure on remaining natural forests. Forest enrichment planting aims to replenish the forest with natural foods for chimpanzees to reduce future human-chimpanzee conflict (by reducing crop ‘raiding’ by the great apes). The project also provides households with training in conservation farming, new income sources, building, using more fuel-efficient stoves, water quality, the benefits of trees, erosion control, and leadership skills.
DGB has deployed an innovative and award-winning 18-data collection system that consists of battery-operated smartphones, GPS receivers, data, and image uploads through laptops or internet access points to monitor project activities. The data collection is conducted by trained local representatives, called Quantifiers, who are often Small Group members. They travel to each specific project area by walking, biking, and taking local buses. DGB does not own any vehicles.
The project is located in the Hoima, Bulindi, and Masindi districts of western Uganda, where more than 300 wild chimpanzees survive in shrinking fragments of forest on agricultural land. This area has substantial conservation value as it’s a ‘corridor’ linking major chimpanzee populations in two large protected areas, the Budongo and Bugoma forests, each home to more than 500 chimpanzees. However, the small corridor forests are owned by local village households and have no formal protection. Since the 1990s, these forests have been extensively logged and converted to farmland. Habitat loss has led to escalating levels of conflict between villagers and resident chimpanzees, threatening the survival of this vital population of great apes.
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