Wednesday, August 19, 2009
Duke Lemur Center and the Madagascar Fauna Group
by Charlie Welch, Duke Lemur Center Conservation Manager
Andrea and I are just back from the annual MFG board meeting which was hosted this year by the Brookfield Zoo in Chicago. The meeting consists of progress reports from the on the ground conservation work at Ivoloina and Betampona, as well as budget and activity planning for the year to come. The good news is that in addition to great progress with all aspects of the projects, the MFG is on as firm a financial ground as it has ever been. Relatively new in-country Project Manager An Bollen is doing a terrific job of taking the projects forward (despite the current political crisis), and former Project Manager Karen Freeman has brought an exciting new facet to the MFG as Research Coordinator. Karen takes on that work from her home in Scotland.
To explain a bit about the MFG – it is a consortium of zoological parks and botanical gardens in the North America and Europe that are committed to conservation in Madagascar. By pooling resources the group can maximize conservation impact and assure long term continuity for the projects. The consortium was initially formed in 1989, and the Duke Lemur Center is a founding and managing member. There are currently 27 member institutions of the MFG, at different membership levels. More information and current newsletters are available at www.savethelemur.org.