– And of course Taita tree hyrax
Taita mountain dwarf galago has drawn enormous international attention after our article was published in Oryx – International Journal of Conservation 11.2.2020: Taita mountain dwarf galago is extant in Taita Hills, Kenya
News was published also in international newspapers including Daily Mail and Science Daily. You can see other newspapers here: In the news.
News about Taita mountain dwarf galago has also spread through Twitter extensively.
We took a risk, when news about Taita mountain dwarf galago began to spread around the world. I hope no-one will miss use the knowledge about these special species.
I feel dedicated now to make sure that this attention will lead to conservation of the species and their habitat, indigenous forests of Taita Hills.
I would like to help to connect people, companies, NGO:s or anyone that sees the importance of conserving these animals.
Taita mountain dwarf galago and Taita tree hyrax need to be identified as species.
Identification is confirmed with DNA studies, among other available knowledge about the species.
Conservation assessment for International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) is also necessary. This assessment requires research of the range these species are found from. At the moment it looks that they exist in only two small forest fragments.
Reforestation plans are already existing. Plans have been created by Kenya Forest Service and researchers from University of Helsinki at Taita Hills. Local people have also participated in planning process.
This reforestation is absolutely necessary for local people, not just animals and plants. Indigenous forests are called water towers. As nearly all forests have been cleared for fields and tree plantations, there is not enough water.
With unpredictable weather patterns related to climate change, people who mostly grow their own food are consistently facing new problems. Particularly people and animals living in lowlands around Taita Hills are struggling, as their water also comes from the hills. You can read more about this from previous post Elephants are pushing down trees of savanna.
Reforestation would conserve thousands of species, improve water catchment for the whole Taita area and mitigate climate change.
First step in reforestation would be to reforest peaks of the mountains in Taita Hills. Also tree plantations located beside indigenous forests could be replaced by indigenous trees.
These actions are very simple. All we need is funding to make it really happen.
When making a donation, choose Taita Fund and write Taita mountain dwarf galago to the message.
I hope you will also send me your contact details, and I will be happy to tell you more about our research and conservation actions. You also have change to participate more, even on site. All these funds will be directly used to the conservation of these species.
You will receive monthly email about what is happening and during field work a weekly video blog.
Professor Jouko Rikkinen, University of Helsinki
Professor Petri Pellikka, University of Helsinki, director of Taita Research Station
Emeritus Professor Simon Bearder, Oxford Brookes University, Nocturnal Primates Research Group
James Mwang’ombe, Kenya Forest Service