Steppes Travel

The Menabe-Antimena Protected Area in Madagascar is considered to be one of the most important remaining areas of dry forest in the country. Covering an area of 2,095km2 this globally threatened forest is home to many locally endemic and threatened species including the giant jumping rat (Hypogeomys antimena), flat-tailed tortoise (Pyxis planicauda) and Madame Berthe’s mouse lemur (Microcebus berthae). However Menabe-Antimena has been experiencing unprecedented levels of forest loss due to an increase of illegal activities within the PA, primarily slash and burn agriculture for maize and peanut production for the overseas oil market. With generous support from Steppes Fund For Change, Durrell is working with local communities to protect and restore Menabe’s forests through community-led patrolling and reforestation, and providing training and resources for Climate Smart Agriculture initiatives. CSA promotes environmentally friendly farming practices, such as organic composting, crop association with legumes to improve soil quality and the installation live hedges to keep out predators and encourage pollinators. These activities are designed to improve crop yields for increased household nutrition and income generation, without the need for further habitat destruction.

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