Van Ngoc Thinh

The Distribution Status of Primates in Bach Ma National Park, Vietnam

Release of primates in Bach Ma National Park.

Bach Ma National ParkViet NamAsia, Education, Mammals, Primates14 Aug 2000

Recent estimates indicate that Bach Ma National Park is home to some 130 mammal species, some new to science and others known to be threatened. Of 25 primate species thought to exist in Vietnam, at least 10 species and sub-species are found in Bach Ma, and all of these are listed by the IUCN as threatened. Wildlife hunting, trading and trafficking are growing problems in the area.

Research on the distribution status of the primate population in the Park is vital to allow development of a conservation plan to offer protection against such illegal operations.

This project will use various methods to assess the primate populations in the Park, including interviewing hunters and local communities, and will assist the forest guard staff with patrols. Once the key areas have been identified, the project will propose additional protection measures.

Final Report

Over the past year several research and conservation objectives have been addressed.Through investigation of population densities of various primate species, a distribution map for those species has been produced, covering the whole of Bach Ma National Park.The team has identified the main threats to the Park's primates as being hunting and habitat loss.While the Park's Management is able to mitigate the threat of hunting through organising many patrols, destroying traps and arresting illegal hunters, it is almost impossible to stamp out hunting completely.

Exploitation of resources such as Re perfume (Cinnamomum) is a major contributor to habitat loss, and the team has had great success in reducing this.The team has undertaken extensive dialogue with local people and hunters about the importance of conservation and the danger of extinction of primates and has widely published announcements about hunting laws, and the penalties associated with illegal hunting.

Recommendations for future actions include increasing forest guard patrols, continued work with local authority administrations to further reduce hunting and exploitation pressure, and increased educational propaganda.

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