Results from the application of standardised biodiversity surveys in forests in Viet Nam and southern Laos will help law enforcement and conversation officials take action to protect wildlife.
The survey results were presented at a two-day workshop held last week in the central city of Hue, organised by the German Leibniz Institute for Zoo and Wildlife Research (IZW) and WWF'S Carbon and Biodiversity (CarBi) project.
Four protected areas, namely Bach Ma National Park, Quang Nam and Hue Saola Nature Reserves (Viet Nam), and Xe Sap National Protected Area (Laos) were surveyed.
The workshop, which ended on Wednesday, convened stakeholders, including directors of protected areas, Forest Protection Departments, CarBi Project Management Units, national stakeholders (Ministry of Agricultural and Rural Development), NGOs and national and international scientists and organisations.
Participants discussed enforcement and mammal survey activities in the Central Annamites Landscape and the lessons learned, opportunities and challenges of the application of standardised mammalian biodiversity surveys and enforcement activities.
It identified the needs in the coming years to adapt and possibly extend enforcement activities and mammalian biodiversity surveys, as well as draft recommendations for a national programme on standardised mammalian biodiversity surveys, to be submitted to the government.
WWF's CarBi project contributes to the avoidance of deforestation and forest degradation in the border area of Southern Laos and central Viet Nam.
A significant component of CarBi concentrates on improved management of the four protected areas.
These areas are located in the southern regions of the Central Annamites Landscape, an area of outstanding biodiversity richness, providing critically important ecosystem services to the people and industries of the area.
CarBi operates in the contiguous trans-boundary complex of the four protected areas and adjacent corridors, aiming to preserve the critically endangered Saola (a forest-dwelling bovine) and a number of additional threatened species of global importance.
CarBi has been working closely with government agencies in Viet Nam and Laos to improve the protection of these conservation areas.
An important instrument in measuring conservation success is biodiversity monitoring.
IZW studies the diversity of life and the interactions of wildlife with people and their environment.
IZW's work integrates applied and function-oriented research to develop a scientific basis for novel approaches to conservation of wildlife.
IZW has been working in Southeast Asia for almost a decade, using mainly non-invasive techniques, particularly camera trapping, to study species and their communities.
WWF CarBi and IZW have partnered to undertake scientifically robust surveys to study the threatened mammals and their communities in this biodiverse landscape.
Most wildlife survey methods are designed to study particular species, but are unsuitable for studying species communities.
The IZW designed mammal community surveys, recognising that the diversity of medium- and large-sized mammal species, are of particular importance for conservation.