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Republic of Botswana An overview of the BirdLife-SwedBio project Sustaining Biodiversity to Sustain Livelihoods in Rural Botswana.

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Presentation on theme: "Republic of Botswana An overview of the BirdLife-SwedBio project Sustaining Biodiversity to Sustain Livelihoods in Rural Botswana."— Presentation transcript:

1 Republic of Botswana An overview of the BirdLife-SwedBio project Sustaining Biodiversity to Sustain Livelihoods in Rural Botswana

2 About the Project Title: Sustaining Biodiversity to Sustain Livelihoods in Rural Botswana To enhance the conservation of three Important Bird Areas (IBAs) and their associated biodiversity while improving rural livelihoods in the surrounding areas In simple terms, the GOAL is:

3 Overall Objective To assist three Site Support Groups (SSGs) to develop replicable pilot projects that will motivate and empower their communities to take action for conserving biodiversity through the protection of their Important Bird Areas (IBAs) pilot projects motivation empowerment livelihood and biodiversity improvement

4 Site 1: Lake Ngami The map shows the location of Lake Ngami in the northern part of Botswana (marked with a red circle) The slide shows an aerial view of Lake Ngami

5 Site 1: Lake Ngami Lake Ngami was chosen as one of the IBAs because it is completely unprotected It currently includes the whole of Controlled Hunting Area NG 38, which has not been gazetted for any particular land use The Site Support Group at Lake Ngami is: BOSELE LAKE NGAMI CONSERVATION TRUST The community from which its members are drawn is relatively small; therefore the benefits from a well-organised and marketed avi-tourism project will make a significant contribution to poverty alleviation. Most members are rural poor with limited participation in decision-making.

6 Trained bird guides at the lake Bosele Lake Ngami Conservation Trust Committee Site 1: Lake Ngami Community members at a kgotla meeting discussing the project

7 Site 2: Makgadikgadi Pans The map shows the location of the pan in the central part of Botswana (marked with a green circle) The slide shows an aerial view of the Pans with flamingoes – it is an important breeding site for these birds

8 Site 2: Makgadikgadi Pans The Makgadikgadi Pans IBA was chosen as one of the areas because it is partially protected (only the western part is national park). The remaining areas are unprotected, except for the Nata Sanctuary The Site Support Group in this area is: THE NATA SANCTUARY TRUST Its members are from different areas and backgrounds, but the common denominator is their proximity to the pans and dependence on the biodiversity of the area, realised through tourism.

9 Nata Sanctuary members visiting the site Site 2: Makgadikgadi Pans Constructing tourist accommodation at the site Bird Guide training course at Nata Sanctuary

10 Site 3: Mannyelanong Hill The slide shows a Cape Vulture flying around Mannyelanong Hill where the species breeds. The map shows the location of the hill in the eastern part of Botswana (marked with a brown circle)

11 Site 3: Mannyelanong Hill Mannyelanong Hill was chosen as one of the IBAs because it is completely protected (it is a game reserve under the Wildlife Department). It thus contrasts with the other two areas. The Site Support Group in this area is: THE CAPE VULTURE ENVIRONMENTAL CLUB The club is formed by a very active youth group from Otse Village that is registered under the Association of Environmental Clubs of Botswana. They are committed to conserve the environment, with a focus on the Cape Vulture.

12 Official opening of the office Site 3: Mannyelanong Hill Strategy Planning Workshop Socio-Economic Baseline Survey

13 Implemented Activities Lake Ngami Makgadikgadi Pans Mannyelanong Hill Policy Perspective - Advocacy & Communication Strategies - National Conservation Forums Livelihood Perspective - Bird Guide Training - Avi-Tourism Capacity Building - Exchange Visits - Advertisement Campaigns Bio-Diversity Gains - Baseline survey - Bird monitoring - Encouragement of Area Protection

14 Income is being generated for rural families Achievements Policy Perspective Development and implementation of advocacy & communication strategies for all 3 SSGs Members participated in national conservation forums and commemorated different conservation days Livelihood Perspective Socio-economic baseline surveys conducted (these will be repeated later to measure progress) Bird guide training courses held Promotion of avi-tourism through trained guides

15 Exchange visit for all three Site Support Groups held in December 2007 – sharing experiences Capacity Building Capacity needs assessment done for all 3 SSGs Production of scientific and popular articles to share the projects experience SSGs web pages linked to BirdLife Botswana website Office furniture and equipment donated to SSGs Banners produced to advertise the Nata Sanctuary to self-drive tourists Brochures developed for Nata Sanctuary and Cape Vulture Environmental Club

16 Encouragement to take action for site protection Achievements Community bird monitoring Bird monitoring training Biodiversity Gains SSG members trained to undertake bird monitoring Biodiversity baseline surveys conducted at all 3 sites

17 -International avi-tourism market exists Opportunities All sites -Government interested to protect IBAs as biodiversity rich areas -Socio-economic activities (avi-tourism) have the potential to generate community and other stakeholders interest while giving a value to birds

18 -There are still delays in the updating of management plans for all three sites Challenges All sites - Advocacy results will take some time to materialise -Promoting avi-tourism while minimizing disturbances to breeding birds remains a challenge -Human/wildlife conflicts are still current

19 Lessons Learnt -Community ownership speeds up project progress and increases chances of success -Local communities are very keen to work with the conservation of their resources inside and outside the IBAs -Communication and collaboration between SSGs and village-based stakeholders is key to project success -Village-level initiatives lead to improvements in the standards of livelihoods of village members

20 Coming together is the beginning, staying together is progress and working together is success - together for birds and people This project is just like this very young Blacksmith Lapwing chick which, in time, will mature into a fully-fledged adult. The Site Support Groups are still at an early stage but as time passes they will grow into strong and active SSGs.


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