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  • Print publication year: 2019
  • Online publication date: November 2019

4 - The Wild Chimpanzee Foundation (WCF) and the Taï Chimpanzee Project (TCP)

Summary

The Wild Chimpanzee Foundation (WCF) is a spin-off from the Taï Chimpanzee Project (TCP), created after TCP researchers witnessed wild chimpanzee populations in and around Taï National Park diminish due to wildlife poaching and massive deforestation of the tropical forest. Prof. Christophe Boesch initiated conservation efforts with help from his PhD students, who know the region and problematics. The first conservation efforts the WCF initiated were interactive theatre campaigns and biomonitoring programmes. The theatre campaigns were based on previous sociological studies and included collaboration with sociologists from the national universities. The biomonitoring programme started in 2004 in collaboration with Ivorian students, quickly scaling up to the national level and including other protected areas. From 2007 onwards, the collaboration of TCP/WCF initiated a law enforcement and biomonitoring programme in the research area. Between 2009 and 2016, this project helped secure the research area and allowed the most important animal species to repopulate. WCF now undertakes pilot studies for innovative and new methodologies to further improve the park and chimpanzee protection.