West/Central Africa

West/Central Africa

Reason #24 to get involved

The African wild dog population numbers less than 5,000 individuals and continues to decline due to habitat fragmentation, human conflict, and widespread disease. Your support allows for wild dog scouts to monitor and protect this species. 

Nurturing community conservation in Cameroon against all odds

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.

You get in beside your driver, crank up the music, and set off. Your visitors that evening are also en route, but they are much closer to your house than you. They will arrive before you but that does not worry you — being old friends and colleagues, there will be lots of time to catch up.

Nigeria

Nigeria is home to a wealth of biodiversity within its seven national parks.

Nigeria lies on the western part of Africa on the Gulf of Guinea. It contains several large urban centers like the capital city Abuja and is one of sub-Saharan Africa’s largest economies, relying heavily on oil as its main source of foreign exchange earnings.

Niger

More than 80 percent of this landlocked country is covered by the Sahara Desert.

Named after the Niger River, Niger is the largest nation in West Africa. The Sahara Desert covers more than 80 percent of its land. Even its non-desert portions are threatened by drought.

Niger’s hot and dry landlocked position has put it at a great disadvantage. It is one of the poorest countries in the world, with low literacy, lack of infrastructure, and little access to health care.

Democratic Republic of Congo

There are parts of the Democratic Republic of Congo that does not make the news.

In spite of a history of political instability, the Democratic Republic of Congo is an ecological paradise.

Located in Central Africa, DRC is one of the most important countries in Africa for biodiversity conservation. More than 81 million people live here — as do a number of spectacular endemic species like the okapi, Grauer’s gorilla, bonobo, and Congo peacock along with over 400 other species of mammals, over 1,000 bird species, over 400 fish species, and over 10,000 species of plants.

Uganda

Uganda has an extraordinary natural beauty and significant untapped tourism potential.

From the highest mountain range in Africa — the Mountains of the Moon — to the mighty Nile, Uganda is filled with natural beauty.

So, it’s only natural that there is a variety of wildlife and flora found within the country’s boundaries. More than half of the world’s endangered mountain gorillas, over 1,000 bird species, along with seven out of the 18 plant kingdoms, and more than 340 mammal species find sanctuary in Uganda.

Cameroon

Rich biodiversity earned it the nickname “Africa in miniature.”

Cameroon has often been called “Africa in miniature” for how much it mirrors the continent’s diversity. Like the continent it calls home, Cameroon boasts a coastline, mountains, savanna, desert, and tropical rainforests.

Kidnapped baby chimp rescued from the illegal pet trade

Springing from Dja Faunal Reserve’s dense rainforest, Bouamir is one of the largest and most iconic outcrops in this 5,260 sq. kilometer protected area in southern Cameroon. It is also home to the landscape’s great apes, so when a baby chimpanzee was discovered alone in an abandoned house in the nearby village of Nemeyong she was named after the great rock Bouamir as a symbol of her resilience.

This mountain gorilla lodge is saving Rwanda’s great apes

The Virunga Massif is a vestige of Central Africa’s tropical biodiversity but myriad threats are placing the region’s critical ecosystems and species at risk. Spanning Rwanda’s Volcanoes National Park, Mgahinga Gorilla National Park in Uganda, and the Democratic Republic of Congo’s Virunga National Park, the massif is home to the endangered mountain gorilla, one of the world’s largest and most threatened primates. Though their habitats are secured within national parks, these great apes have historically been killed by poachers and threatened with human encroachment into protected forests as civil strife uprooted the landscape.

In the early 1980s, mountain gorilla numbers in the Virunga Massif area (not including the Bwindi Impenetrable Forest populations) were as few as 230 individuals.