Community conservation education session in Bakingili 1024px

Bakingili Community Forest

Forest protection, reforestation and Waldschutz, Aufforstung und sustainable livelihoods in Cameroon

The Bakingili community forest is a 905 ha large forest block in South West Cameroon, that is designated as „Community Forest“. It borders the Mt Cameroon National Park and is home to many threatened wildlife species such as the African forest elephants, chimpanzees, drills, many other species of monkeys. Unfortunately, parts of the forest have been lost to illegal logging, encroachment and lava flowing from the active Mt Cameroon volcano. The consequences of deforestation are obvious; most rivers and streams have dried up (leaving over 3000 families facing acute water scarcity); human-wildlife conflicts are common and there has been significant decrease in income from non-timber forest products (these include forest spices, fruits, nuts, medicinal plants, honey, mushrooms, vegetables). While not much can be done about lava, regenerating degraded areas is possible and a promising way of revamping the forest ecosystem and increases the quantity of carbon sequestered.

The Cameroon Conservation Organisation Ecological Balance thus engages for the reforestation and the protection of Bakingili Forest. They aim to combine local awareness and education initiatives with the active contribution and involvement of local communities in the conservation of the forest. The planned reforestation measures will have multiple positive effects for both people and nature – it counteracts forest fragmentation, restores degraded habitat, helps rising the lowered groundwater level, and thus causes streams that are currently dried up to resume flow. The over 5000 native trees to be planted annually will increase the quantities and hence income from non-timber forest products as the leaves, flowers, fruits, bark and root. By the efficiency of empowered village forest management committee, Ecological Balance aims to stop encroachment and reduce illegal logging (which often goes along with illegal opportunistic hunting) which will result in an increase in wildlife populations.

Project goals

Regeneration of degraded forest habitat of Bakingili Community forest

Reduction of anthropogenic threats

Reduction of human-wildlife conflicts

Significant increase of income through the sustainable use of non-timber forest products

Increase of wildlife populations

Planned activities

Establishment and managing a community tree nursery

At least one hectare of degraded forest land regenerated with native species every year

Training in innovative reforestation methods

Establishment and training of forest patrolling teams

Effective cooperation with the department of forestry

Creating of buffer zone of forests gardens with trees preferred by wildlife to reduce conflicts

Project information:

Species: African Forest Elephant (Loxodonta cyclotis), Chimpanzee (Pan troglodytes vellerosus), Drill (Mandrillus leucophaeus), Preuss’s Monkey (Cercopithecus preussi), Red-eared Monkey (Cercopithecus erythrotis)

Region: Cameroon

Implementing partner: Ecological Balance

Duration:  April 2021 - March 2022