ELP Colleagues

Modeste Mengue

© Peter Wrege

Modest Douckaga

Modest has been observing and identifying elephants in Gabon for more than five years. As part of the Wildlife Conservation Society elephant research team, he has been the key person establishing a database of elephant identities for Langoue Bai, Ivindo National Park.

Modest is now working with Nico Bout in the Bateke region, teaching new researchers about elephant observation and identification.

Nicolas Bout

© Peter Wrege

Nicolas Bout

Nico has been dedicated for many years to understanding the ecosystem known as the Plateaux Bateke, with a special commitment to the conservation of large mammals, especially the forest elephant.

As head of the Bateke Elephant Project he made important strides toward expanding our knowledge of how elephants use this ecosystem, and increasing the interest and commitment of local people to find alternative land uses that are compatible with sharing the landscape with elephants and other important fauna.

Nico has been a key collaborator with ELP in our monitoring efforts in the Bateke region. We have plans for expanding into joint projects that have a real conservation impact for elephants as Nico begins a new position with the The Aspinall Foundation - Gabon.

© Peter Wrege

Clement (right) with Russel, learning the ropes of deploying an ARU.

Cement Inkamba-Nkulu & Russel Tsoumou

Clement and Russel are Congolese biologists who have been working with WCS-Congo for many years. Clement recently completed his MSc degree, studying the movement of forest elephants among a cluster of clearings in Congo, including the Dzanga clearing studied by Andrea Turkalo.

Clement is principle investigator on a new study at two recently discovered bais in Congo, just east of Djobo Bai in Gabon. This is a critical area for forest elephants and currently under considerable pressure from poachers. Clement and Russel are working with ELP to collect acoustic data at these bais and also to make the first attempts to use night-vision photography to identify individuals visiting the bai at night.

precious woods logo

Compagnie Equitoriale des Bois

CEB was the first company in Gabon to operate under the principles of sustainable forestry management. CEB produced Central Africa's first comprehensive forestry management plan. Under Gabonese law, the forest must be managed on a sustainable basis. The company is owned by Precious Woods.

ELP has been recording elephants at several forest clearings, or bais (the foresters call them 'salines') in this concession, including one that turns out to be the most active bai known to date in Gabon!

Image of WCS logo

Wildlife Conservation Society

WCS has been working in Gabon since 1985 when Richard Barnes started a 4-year project to estimate the number of elephants there. WCS has been working with Gabon National Parks Office to manage a number of the protected areas there. ELP has been working as a collaborator with WCS since 2007, providing new and different information about forest elephants to help in the conservation effort.

 

Overview

Making real progress in the field depends on the expertise and commitment of local biologists. Our colleagues are becoming ever more critical as ELP expands the number of sites under study.

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© Tomo Nishihara.

On the road in Gabon.