2006/7 EAZA Madagascar Campaign
There is something about Madagascar that means that once you have been there, you want to return again and again. More than that, you want to help to conserve the remarkable bioldiversity that you find and that means helping the people of Madagascar conserve their own unique and wonderful contribution to the amazing planet we live on, their island home.
Madagascar, through the inspired leadership of President Ravalomanana, is finding new ways to conserve its wild places and wild life.
Madagascar is the fourth largest island in the world with unique flora and fauna. 3.2% of the world’s plant species and 2.8% of the global vertebrates are only found on Madagascar. Of the 117 described mammal species on the island, 90% of these are found no where else on earth, if bats are excluded, then 100% of mammals are endemic. For this reason, Madagascar ranks in the top five ‘hotspots’ of the world.
The diversity of habitats found on the island is so striking and the topography so varied that Madagascar gets called the 8th continent. Habitats include rainforests, dry deciduous forests, bush, xerophytic and spiny forests, seasonal humid forests and anthropogenic grasslands. However the forest habitats are dwindling which is major problem for the 90% of Madagascar’s fauna that rely on it. Of the 117 species of terrestrial species described, almost 50% are listed on the IUCN Red List as Critically endangered, Endangered or Vulnerable.
The EAZA Madagascar Campaign is very fortunate to not only have the personal support from the President of the Republic of Madagascar, Marc Ravalomana but also to have the actor John Cleese as the patron.
The campaign has six targets:
- To raise public awareness of one of the most important reservoirs of natural history on the planet.
- Promote ecotourism
- To raise funds for specific conservation projects.
- To highlight ways in which the public can make a positive contribution to conservation through activities in their daily lives.
- To promote the concept of ‘twinning’ between EAZA members and protected areas in Madagascar.