You finish your last meeting in a nearby town at 4 p.m. You are tired and ready to head home. You have made this trip many times before and know it takes exactly three hours. After all, yours is usually the only car on the road, so traffic jams are not a consideration.
Florence Louma is a happy woman. During the last cocoa harvest in early 2019, she made a profit of over USD $1,700, making her the top-earning female cocoa farmer in Kagnnole village, Somalomo, at the border of Dja Faunal Reserve in eastern Cameroon.
A vital home for critically endangered great apes, the Dja Faunal Reserve benefits from a community-centered conservation strategy as development stems an upswing in human activity around the protected area and buffer zones.
Poaching and the unsustainable hunting of wildlife threaten biodiversity and the long-term viability of Africa’s ecosystems. Many species are also hunted for bush meat, affecting the continued survival of those key populations. It is estimated that the national value of the bush meat trade, widely practiced in sub-Saharan Africa, ranges from US $42 million to US $205 million across countries in West and Central Africa.
Cameroon has often been called “Africa in miniature” for how much it mirrors the continent’s diversity. That’s especially true from an ecological standpoint. Like its mother continent, Cameroon boasts a coastline, mountains, savanna, desert and tropical rainforests. Though just larger than Sweden in terms of geographic size, this Central African nation hosts roughly 90% of all the ecosystem types found in Africa.