Image from nationalgeographic.com
The main goals of GTAP are to enhance our knowledge of the central subspecies of chimpanzee (Pan troglodytes troglodytes) and improve the conservation status of this ape throughout central Africa. Although the chimpanzee is a flagship conservation species that has been studied for several decades in eastern and western Africa, very little is known about the central subspecies residing in the Congo Basin.
As a component of their ongoing research and monitoring program, they are also examining the effects of mechanized logging and associated activities on chimpanzees and gorillas. The study area has been subdivided into zones with regard to the Ndoki-Nouabalé boundary, past and future scheduled timber extraction in adjacent regions, and geographical features such as waterways. This unique scenario has the potential to provide new insights to anthropogenic influences on chimpanzee behavior and ecology, and also indicates the rapidly changing context of primatological research and its intersection with conservation efforts in habitat countries.
The Goualougo triangle was also featured in National Geographic magazine in 2003 when Jane Goodall visited the area after a 10 year absence from the forest. The entire story can be read online at NationalGeographic.com
Dave and Crickette have kindly allowed me to post the following two videos, created by up and coming film maker Adrian Melnyk, on the DNApes blog. Enjoy!
The first video "Remote Video Monitoring of Fruiting Trees in the Ndoki Forest" demonstrates the utility of camera traps for documenting the diversity of wildlife in areas without the need for more time consuming or disruptive practices.
CLICK HERE to download a high quality version of this video.
The second video "Chimpanzee Tool Technology in the Ndoki Forest" highlights the main tool using behaviours of the chimpanzees in the Goualougo study area, some never documented at other long-term chimpanzee study sites.