Sunday, August 10, 2008

Challenges facing Betampona

Betampona is a fascinating preserve, but it stands as one of the last tracts of eastern low elevation rainforest remaining in the country. Human disturbances have taken their toll in this area--selective logging, rice cultivation, some hunting and a growing human population have all extracted resources from the area surrounding the park. It is truly an island refuge of primary rainforest, as one can see in this recent satellite image. (note the dark green shape surrounded by lighter secondary forest)

Despite disturbances, a broad diversity of wildlife and plant species remain, including 11 lemur taxa, 3 of which are endangered (Indri indri, Varecia variegata variegata, and Propithecus diadema diadema). We’ll continue to focus on Microcebus here, so we’ll set traps every night on many of the trails in the preserve.


Tom Driscoll said...


Your adventures sound great and i wish we were going to Betampona too. The pictures look like the area is heavily deforested.

The mouse lemur is cute! Are they difficult to catch?

Hope you are seeing a lot of birds.

See you in September.

Barbara and tom

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