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NCF, Wilder Institute Donate Equipment Worth N8m To Preserve Cross River’s Endangered Gorillas

By Chris Njoku

The Nigeria Conservation Foundation (NCF) in collaboration with the Wilder Institute has donated equipment worth N8 million for the conservation of Cross River’s endangered gorillas.

According to the foundation, it is part of its efforts to contribute to the protection of threatened species in the nation such as the Cross River gorillas found in wildlife sanctuaries in the state.

In a release signed by the Head of Communication Mr Oladapo Soneye on Friday, he said the donation was to boost ongoing research projects on the conservation of the gorillas in partnership with other organisations.

Soneye said the donation was made to some of the partners of NCF which included, Cross River National Park, Cross River Forestry Commission and the University of Calabar (UNICAL).

“The equipment which will aid research include digital cameras, desktop computers, laptops, projector and projector screen, video conferencing gadgets, 65-inch flat screen Hi-sense TV, and professional Video Conference Cameras.

“Others are MC3000 USB HD PTZ auto rotate tracking voice camera, built-in 4 digital microphone array and 10 meters voice pickup,  2.2million pixels, 1/2.8 HD colour CMOS sensor, 1920*1080HD display, walkie-talkie, still cameras for GPS handsets and drones.

“The television and computer equipment will support video conferencing for meetings at the University of Calabar while the camera traps, drones and other equipment are for the student research projects,” he said.

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Speaking further, he noted that the Cross River Gorilla Initiative commenced in 2022 and has awarded scholarships to two masters and a doctorate student all in the Department of Forestry and Wildlife Management in UNICAL.

He said the students have resumed their three-month internship programme with NCF to gain practical experience in the use of field equipment, conduct field surveys and familiarise themselves with project communities.

According to him, the students will also understand the role of gender in forest resource management with reference to gorilla conservation.

Similarly, Mr Emmanuel Owan,  Head, Calabar Office of NCF said to achieve the project goals, a two-day training on gender and conservation was held recently at the University of Calabar.

Owan stated that the essence was to give participants a robust understanding Of the importance of gender in the conservation of Cross River gorillas and its applicability in field research.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the Cross River gorilla is a critically endangered subspecies of the western gorilla and lives in small areas of highland forest that span the border of Nigeria and Cameroon.

It is estimated that there are at most 300 Cross River gorillas left in the wild as a result of threats associated with habitat loss and hunting.

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Christian Njoku
Christian Njoku
Christian Njoku is a journalist with an eye for stories that foster growth and development. His wealth of experience cannot be compared to any other as he is always on top of stories that bring about positive change in society.

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