The Little Rock Zoo

.The Little Rock Zoo needs to step up and care for the animals better! Please read the several artciles here with deaths, sickness and a bald chimp!

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Bonobos, Native Only To The Democratic Republic of Congo, Face Threats Such As Poaching, Rain-forest Destruction And Years Of Civil War

"The first thing we had to do this trip was to evaluate the state of our research station and get an overview of what has happened here in the past year," writes the Zoological Society's Dr. Gay E. Reinartz, a bonobo conservationist working in Africa in fall and winter 2009.

You can read Dr. Reinartz's latest update from the field here:

Dr. Reinartz has worked in Africa’s Democratic Republic of Congo to help save the bonobo—a rare, endangered great ape--for the past 12 years. As head of the Society’s Bonobo & Congo Biodiversity Initiative, Dr. Reinartz spends almost six months each year in the Congo, where the Zoological Society has a research station called Etate.

As part of her latest trip to the field in fall and winter 2009, Dr. Reinartz will share occasional updates on the Zoological Society’s Web site.Go to to read excerpts from e-mails shared by the Zoological Society’s field-research team. Please check back often. The Zoological Society will add updates throughout the trip.

Bonobos, native only to the Democratic Republic of Congo, face threats such as poaching, rain-forest destruction and years of civil war. From the research station in the Congo’s Salonga National Park, Dr. Reinartz and the Zoological Society:

• Survey forest in search of bonobo populations and study the ecological factors that influence bonobo distribution.

• Develop anti-poaching programs in the Salonga to protect apes, forest elephants and other endangered animals from their worst threat – poaching. BCBI trains, equips and supports park guards who patrol bonobo-rich areas and enforce laws that prohibit hunting of endangered species.

• Provide jobs, literacy education, school equipment, training, and support for agricultural cooperatives to communities living near the park so that local people have a vested interest in protecting the bonobo. These activities also reduce the people’s reliance on illegal hunting for bush meat.

• Model small-scale conservation methods that can be used throughout Congo.

Photo: Dr. Gay E. Reinartz (far left) and the research team in the Congo.


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