To keep the momentum going for the West and Central Africa Species Action Plan (WCASAP), which was launched during the IUCN World Conservation Congress in September 2016, we are trying to team up with a number of large NGOs, all member of IUCN.
In May 2017 a delegation (Marjolein Schoe and Hans de Iongh) of the Leo Foundation had a meeting with the Zoological Society in London (ZSL; see this news item). Beginning July, Hans de Iongh further had a meeting with the coordinator of the European Association of Zoos and Aquaria (EAZA) at Artis Zoo. Second half of July, board member Laura Bertola had a meeting with the Wildlife Conservation Society (WCS), which has its headquarters in the Bronx Zoo, New York to discuss the further development of WCASAP.
WCASAP is an initiative that aims to support and coordinate nature conservation activities in the region of West and Central Africa. Attention in this region is much needed, because it is characterized by a large number of unique species and subspecies which are Critically Endangered, and which show strong declines. The WCS is an interesting partner for WCASAP because they have several projects in Africa which are coordinated from local headquarters. We were happy to hear that WCS is willing to support the WCASAP and even expressed their interest in playing a larger role in carnivore and lion conservation.
We will continue to communicate with WCS about collaborating on this initiative to ensure that the WCASAP will become a success.