THE HAGUE, Netherlands – The United States of America today announced 33 Grants totaling more than $1.7 million to support conservation of Asian elephants, great apes, rhinoceroses, and tigers in 17 countries.
International conservation organizations and other partners will contribute more than $2 million in matching funds for a total of more than $4 million to support conservation projects for the species.
“The American people have a great love and appreciation for wildlife and want to support the efforts of other nations to protect and conserve these species,” said Deputy Assistant Secretary of the Interior Todd Willens. “Combining these grants with the matching funds put up by partners, we will monitor and study elephants, tigers and rhinos, ensure they are protected from poaching and other illegal activities and enable their habitat to be conserved.”
“Through this partnership approach, we are leveraging our conservation dollars to provide the greatest benefit to these species,” Willens said.
Willens made the announcement as the head of the U.S. delegation to the on-going 14th Conference of the Parties to the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora.
The United States is awarding the grants to support voluntary conservation efforts in cooperation with local communities and landowners in Cambodia, India, Malaysia, Bangladesh, Sri Lanka, Nepal, Indonesia, Thailand, Vietnam, Russia, Cameroon, Lao People’s Democratic Republic, Cote d’Ivoire, Gabon, Nigeria, Republic of Congo and Liberia.
The grants will support projects such as construction of a floating anti-poaching camp in India designed to help protect elephants and other endangered species that live in Kaziranga National Park; mitigation of the negative effects of logging on great apes in the Congo; conservation of habitat and curtailment of the capture of orangutans at a national park in Indonesia; and education of journalists in Russia on tiger conservation so they are able to report on the issue accurately.
The grants are awarded through the Wildlife Without Borders Program of the United States Fish and Wildlife Service. The Service administers these grants through its Asian Elephant, Great Apes and Rhino/Tiger Conservation Funds. The funds were established by the United States Congress to provide assistance in the conservation of the species in the face of a variety of threats, including poaching, illegal trafficking, human conflict, habitat loss and disease.
For more information about the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service’s international programs,
visit http://www.fws.gov/ international/dicprograms/wwbp.htm.
Here is the list of grants:
Asian Elephant Conservation Fund
12 Grants Total Grant Funding: $681,450 Partner Matching Funds: $1,007,148
Partner: The World Wide Fund for Nature, Cambodia Country Program. The WWF Dry Forest Species project will engage in cooperative activities with Cambodia’s Ministry of Environment and their Department of Nature Conservation and Protection, to improve the conservation status of Asian elephants within Phnom Prich Wildlife Sanctuary, including enhanced protection of elephants, habitat conservation, improved Protected Area management, strengthening of national, provincial and community capacity to implement cooperative and collaborative conservation programs from the national to the community level, community outreach and conservation education, and population surveys and monitoring. Grant: $49,870.
Partner: The World Wide Fund for Nature, Greater Mekong Program. The purpose of this project is to determine the distribution of elephant populations, human-elephant conflict, and elephant poaching, identify appropriate management and conservation measures, develop guidelines for human-elephant conflict mitigation, and improve national capacity for elephant management issues. Grant: $57,212.
Partner: The Rhino Foundation for Nature in Northeast India. The purpose of this project is to build a floating anti-poaching camp that will be navigable along the Bhramaputra River, which forms the northern boundary of Kaziranga National Park, to enhance protection of elephants and other endangered species that live in the park. Grant: $46,376.
Partner: Conservation Himalayas. The project plans to reach grassroots communities, the general public, students, foresters and forest guards with a comprehensive elephant conservation education message and encourage community understanding and appropriate action to support elephant conservation efforts in the elephant corridors in Uttarakhand. Grant: $49,987.
Partner: University of Malaysia Sabah. The purpose of this project is to collect information on the elephant population status, population genetics and dispersal patterns in the State of Sabah and provide this information to the Sabah Wildlife Department for inclusion in the Bornean Elephant Management Plan in Sabah. Grant: $50,163.
Partner: Wildlife Conservation Society. This is the second year of the proposed 5-year collaboration between WCS and the Government of Malaysia. During this year, WCS will initiate elephant population surveys. Grant: $60,043.
Partner: Zoo Outreach Organization Trust. The purpose of this project is to minimize human-elephant conflict and death of humans and elephants, provide a positive image of elephants while promoting practical methods people can adopt to mitigate conflict, train educators in techniques and provide accurate and effective educational tools that promote attitudinal and behavioral changes to avoid conflict and produce measurable results, and create a momentum which would continue to build on itself long after the 12 training workshops in India, Nepal, Sri Lanka, and Bangladesh. Grant: $128,850.
Partner: Durrell Trust for Conservation Biology. The purpose of this project is to survey elephant populations and their habitat, train Department of Forestry staff in these rigorous survey and monitoring skills, disseminate information to project partners and policy makers, and develop an elephant conservation management plan. Grant: $28,815.
Partner: Durrell Trust for Conservation Biology. This is the second year of this project. Traditional crop guarding measures will be evaluated and novel guarding measures will be tested and evaluated. Grant: $49,995.
Partner: University of Massachusetts. The purpose of this project is to investigate elephant dietary ecology in various habitats, determine elephant movement, home range behavior and habitat use within the Seblat Elephant Conservation Center (SECC) area and the corridor to Kerinci Seblat National Park, and to build a predictive model of crop raiding around SECC. Grant: $49,100.
Partner: Wildlife Conservation Society. This project in its third year will continue to conduct surveys to estimate the population size, sex and age ratios of the elephant population in Thailand’s largest national park using a fecal DNA based capture-recapture method, reduce threats to elephants and their habitats, reduce human-elephant conflict and promote effective human-elephant conflict mitigation methods, and build capacity within park staff and among other local participants. Grant: $61,497.
Partner: Aaranyak. The purpose of this study is to estimate elephant populations, study their habitat utilization and movement patterns, stratify their habitat based on elephant density, monitor human-elephant conflict and address immediate threats, continue to build local capacity while promoting conservation, and encourage the local communities to cultivate alternative crops that are not palatable to elephants. Grant: $49,542.
Great Apes Conservation Fund
14 Grants Total Grant Funding: $766,017 Total Partner Match: $706,056
Partner: HUTAN. The purpose of this project is to obtain information needed to manage eco-tourists so as to minimize health risks to both people and orangutans associated with the tourism. This will be done by establishing baseline data on disease present in the orangutan population and producing definitive guidelines that will protect visitors from possible risks as well as ensure the long-term well-being of the animals. Grant: $28,840.
Partner: The Max Planck Institute. Development of a project to produce an integrated, web-based database containing conservation-relevant information on gorillas, chimpanzees, bonobos and orangutans. Grant: $23,880.
Partner: Wildlife Conservation Society. The purpose of this project is to conserve the white-cheeked crested gibbon in the Nam Kading National Protected Area. This will be done by gathering baseline data to inform a management plan and building public commitment to gibbon conservation through increased awareness and participatory action and research. Grant: $30,273.
Partner: Fauna and Flora International. To continue support for surveys, public outreach and for ape conservation in the remaining range of the Cross River Gorilla. Grant $65,390.
Partner: The World Wildlife Fund Central Africa Regional Program Office. Grant $99,809.
Partner: Conservation International. The purpose of this project is to strengthen conservation of the yellow-cheeked crested gibbon in northeast Cambodia. This will be done by providing training in gibbon research and conservation, researching gibbon ecology, maintaining a permanent research presence, and providing active policing to control poaching and habitat destruction. Grant: $49,587.
Partner: Conservation International. The purpose of this project is to produce Vietnamese primatologists capable of conducting long-term field research and conservation that contributes to the survival of gibbons and other threatened primates in Vietnam. This will be done by developing and presenting an international standard primate conservation training course and placing trainees in research projects studying Vietnam’s gibbons. Grant: $37,309.
Partner: Indonesian International Rural Agricultural Development Foundation. The purpose of this project is to protect the park from illegal logging. This will be done by providing health care discounts to communities that are successful in protecting their boundaries with the park from illegal logging and by implementing a system wherein local people can pay for health care by working on projects that promote the protection and rehabilitation of the national park.
Partner: The Wild Chimpanzee Foundation. Information gathering, capacity-building and public outreach through conservation theatre and other products. Grant: $64,581. Matching contributions by the Paul Schiller Stiftung, Switzerland; Zurcher Tierschutz, Switzerland; and the Leipzig Zoo.
Partner: WWF Cambodia. The purpose of this project is to bring effective conservation of gibbon populations to Cambodia’s Eastern Plains. This will be done by determining the distribution and abundance of yellow-cheeked crested gibbons in the area and improving protection of essential gibbon habitat in and around Phnom Prich Wildlife Sanctuary. Grant: $35,603.
Partner: The Wildlife Conservation Society. A project focusing on mitigating the negative effects of logging on apes with the goal of producing management plans for ape conservation in northern Congo. Grant $96,905.
Partner: The Wildlife Conservation Society. The purpose of this project is to re-establish and secure the protection of orangutan and gibbon habitat in the corridor between Bukit Barisan Selantan National Park and an even larger landscape of watershed protection forest. This will be done through reassessment and revision of land use plans, stimulating the use of agricultural practices consistent with conservation of the corridor, and facilitating the voluntary relocation of illegal encroachments. Grant: $54,231.
Partner: WWF Thailand. The purpose of this project is to provide information for a gibbon conservation plan as well as recommendations for gibbon management in logged areas across their range. This will be done by determining the population dynamics and ecology of pileated gibbons in forest areas of different ages and degrees of logging in the Khao Ang Ru Nai Wildlife Sanctuary. Grant: $49,970.
Partner: Fauna and Flora International. The purpose of this project is to stop the capture of and protect the habitat of the orangutans of the park. This will be done by patrolling orangutan habitat, collecting and collating information on forest crime, facilitating the processing of criminal cases, providing relevant refresher training, and liaising with government agencies, local communities, and the media. Grant: $54,084.
Rhino/Tiger Conservation Fund
7 Grants Total GRANT Funding: $289,964 Total Partner Match: $302,226
Partner: Global Tiger Forum. The purpose of this project is to improve the scientific and technical skills of wildlife staff for management of tiger and tiger habitats in tiger range states other than India. This will be done by training personnel working in programs relevant to tiger conservation at the Wildlife Institute of India. Grant: $45,086.
Partner: Wildlife Foundation, Khabarovsk, Russia. The purpose of the project is to educate journalists about tiger conservation so they may understand the relevant issues and report them accurately. This grant will support an array of workshops and activities to inform journalists and to involve them in reporting on tiger conservation. Grant: $50,000.
Partner: Wildlife Research and Conservation Society. The purpose of this project is to continue monitoring and provide forest department staff and local volunteers with intensive training in field monitoring techniques. This will be done by utilizing scat encounter rate surveys to obtain an index to the tiger population and line transect sampling to obtain an index to the tiger prey population. Grant: $14,490.
Partner: Wildlife Conservation Society. The purpose of this project is to develop capacity to implement tiger conservation education. This will be done by conducting tiger conservation education workshops for government rangers and educators, teaching them to assess the conservation impact of their teaching programs, and initiating a new wildlife conservation education curriculum for teachers. Grant: $50,226.
Partner: Durrell Trust for Conservation Biology. The purpose of this project is to extend ongoing tiger assessment work into the southern portion of the park. This will be done by assessing the conservation status of tigers, their prey and their forest habitat in these areas; developing local capacity to analyze field data; and carrying out community outreach. Grant: $49,980.
Partner: Durrell Trust for Conservation Biology. The purpose of this project is to strengthen tiger and rhino conservation in the protected area. This will be done by assessing the conservation status of tigers and rhinos inside Batang Hari Protection Forest and using this information to assist activities aimed at protecting these species both inside and outside of the protected area. Grant: $49,115.
Partner: SOS Rhino. The purpose of this project is to demonstrate the importance of the reserve to survival of the subspecies and to advance conservation by presenting the data and recommendations to managers. This will be done by conducting a survey in the reserve, hosting a workshop, establishing updated recommendations, and coordinating with other non-government organizations. Grant: $31,067.