Born Free is extremely concerned that the Cameroon government is planning to licence logging in one of its protected areas, Ebo Forest, risking the survival of great apes and countless other animals.
Ebo Forest is a beautiful, natural tropical forest, an oasis in a growing sea of urbanisation in Central Africa. This is a forest of mystery: the gorillas living here may be western lowland gorillas, or Cross River gorillas, or a new sub-species. The most important population of the very rare Nigeria-Cameroon chimpanzee also lives in Ebo. Both these species are fully protected under Cameroon Wildlife Law, and are classified as Critically Endangered and Endangered, respectively, by the International Union for the Conservation of Nature.
Protected forests are vital for the survival of gorillas and chimpanzees. Recognising this, Ebo Forest was officially proposed as a national park by the Cameroon government in 2006. But today, it is at risk from the very same authorities who vowed to protect it. The government recently proposed the licensing of two Forestry Management Units that would give logging concessions access to vast swathes of the park.
While some logging operations are sustainable, wildlife protection measures are often not enforced and opportunities arise for illegal activities. Logged forests are opened up by networks of logging roads, giving access to wildlife poachers. Workers in the concessions hunt and eat wild animals. Gorillas and chimpanzees become more vulnerable to targeted and opportunistic killing. Living in small numbers and reproducing slowly, their families and populations cannot sustain losses. Tragically, the logging of this forest could devastate these crucial populations of gorillas and chimpanzees, as well as many other species that rely on the forest.
Together, we must implore the government of Cameroon to stand by its commitment to protect the Ebo Forest, and reverse its decision to destroy the park and condemn the animals that live within it.
Send a pre-written email to The Hon. James Duddridge MP (Parliamentary Under Secretary of State, Minister for Africa at the Foreign and Commonwealth Office), asking him to put pressure on the Cameroon government to immediately pause this process, and save Ebo Forest and its wildlife.
Join the local community in signing a petition calling for the protection of the Ebo Forest and their ancestral homeland.
Born Free is calling for Cameroon’s Ebo Forest, home to chimpanzees and gorilla, to be saved. If you agree, please share our campaign with your family and friends.