In this Issue:

Executive Manager's Message
Diary Dates
Latest News
News From the Field
WCS Research Fellowship Program
Final Reports Received
Project Websites


Executive Manager's Message

Seasons Greetings to you all! This is a rather emotional newsletter message for me, since it is my last as the Executive Manager for the CLP. I’m moving across to FFI to become their Programme Director for Conservation Capacity in early January, which I'm greatly looking forward to. I'm very happy to let you know that Robyn Dalzen will be taking up the position as Executive Manager, and Kiragu Mwangi as BirdLife’s CLP Programme Officer (pictured right). I’m very confident that the programme will continue to go from strength to strength under Robyn’s leadership and with the support of the rest of the talented CLP team!

There have been so many developments and achievements during my nine years with the programme - too many to mention! Highlights have included expanding the programme to include CI and WCS as partners to offer a broader network and expertise; The annual award winners training event, where we’ve had the opportunity to spend time with all the people we’re supporting, and introduce them to expertise across the partnership and beyond; Developing support for our alumni by offering a broader range of support, training and grants; Tripling BP’s financial support for the Programme since 2000; Last but not least, I feel honoured to have had the opportunity to work with you in your ground-breaking conservation work. I’ve been inspired by your work and have learnt so much. Areas have been protected, new species discovered, groundbreaking methodologies tested out, and local communities involved in the conservation of their species. It’s been wonderful to see the great results of the collective efforts across the world. This newsletter is full of more of those, and I look forward to continuing to seeing them come through!

Looking ahead, I’m delighted to let you know that the BP Foundation has just agreed to fund the CLP for the next three years. We have received applications for our 2009 team awards, and are currently in the midst of the selection process. Winners will be announced in March, and representatives from each winning team will attend an international training and the Society for Conservation Biology meeting in Beijing China.

I hope to stay in touch with as many of you as possible. Conservation is a small world and we have a great, strong CLP network, so we are sure to be bumping into one another regularly.

Warm wishes of health, happiness and success to you all for 2009 from the whole CLP team!

Marianne Carter, Executive Manager

Quarterly newsletter for the Conservation Leadership Programme - a partnership between BirdLife International, BP, Conservation International, Fauna and Flora International and the Wildlife Conservation Society. Please contact Robyn Dalzen,, with comments and queries or visit
our website.

Diary Dates

8 – 12 January 2009 Fourth Biennial Conference of the International Biogeography Society, Mérida, Mexico

24 - 26 March 2009 10th Student Conference on Conservation Science , Cambridge, UK

31 March – 2 April 2009 British Ornithologicalists' Union Annual Spring Conference: Lowland Farmland Birds III, Leicester, UK

20 April - 1 May 2009 8th Session UN Forum on Forests, New York, USA

20 - 24 May 2009 International Marine Conservation Congress, Washington DC, USA

11 - 16 July 2009 SCB 2009: Harmony for Nature and Society, Beijing, China

Latest News

Wildlife Argentina's First Wildlife Corridor

Amazing, broadcast quality footage of Lesser Florican captured on video

New Oryx website launched containing excellent advice and tips for writing scientific journal articles


News From the Field

Team Awards are granted to teams of three or more individuals who are undertaking high-priority conservation projects. The awards are arranged in a tiered system to allow for progression and include the Future Conservationist Award, Conservation Follow-up Award and Conservation Leadership Award.


Conservation Framework for Furcifer Chameleons in Madagascar (2008)
In July an announcement was made by Madagasikara Voakajy to attract a range of stakeholders to participate in a new project to determine the conservation status of all 17 species of Furcifer chameleons and identify priority habitats for protection.

Dracaena-MAP-Egypt: Dracaena ombet Monitoring & Assessment Project in Gabel Elba Protected Area (GEPA), Egypt (2007)
Over the past year the project has achieved several positive conservation outcomes and it has now completed the field surveys and monitoring programme for D. ombet and prepared the first report on the tree’s status which will be distributed to the Nature Conservation Sector in Egypt.

Study of the Impact of Plant Exploitation on the Habitat, Population & Behaviour of Mountain Gorilla (2001)
Between 2001 and 2005 the team has worked with the Gorilla Organization (formerly The Dian Fossey Gorilla Fund Europe) on the Mount Tshiabirimu Gorilla Conservation Project, and since 2006 they have been based in the Itombwe Natural Reserve studying the impacts of plant exploitation on gorilla populations.

Read more about projects in Africa...


Community-based wildlife monitoring in West Kalimantan, Indonesia (2008)
Less than 1,000 Storm’s stork (Ciconia stormi) exist in the world and the team recorded just one sighting on 30th November in the south-eastern part of Danau Sentarum National Park. Chances to involve local communities in the monitoring of the stork are good since fishermen already recognize the need for active biodiversity management. They have already banned destructive fishing methods and have also organized themselves to fight forest fires in the area.

Calayan Rail Project II: Building stakeholders’ capacity to conserve an island-endemic species (2007)
Owing to the need to raise environmental awareness in the community, focusing particularly on the Calayan rail (Gallirallus calayanensis) and its habitat, a team of ISLA volunteers returned to conduct a series of community consultations in October. The team also reviewed the results of the Action Planning Workshop held in May 2006 to provide updates on the progress of these activities.

Habitat Conservation of Globally threatened Spot-billed Pelicans in Sri Lanka (2008)
The team has had a major breakthrough in convincing the local community to protect the globally threatened spot-billed pelican (Pelecanus philippensis) and its habitat. It has been particularly encouraging to see how enthused the youth groups have become in conservation.

China Wintering Ecology of Hooded Crane at Chongming Dongtan (2008)
Very good progress has been made in all aspects of this project. The arrival of Hooded Cranes (Grus monacha) marked the beginning of a transect surveys to study food availability. Talks about the Chongming Dongtan National Nature Reserve and bird-watching tours led by the team have received very positive feedback from tourists.

Bengal florican conservation and research initiative in BTAD, India (2008)
Field work to identify the potential grassland habitats of Bengal florican (Houbaropsis bengalensis) within the Bodoland Territorial Areas District began in October at the end of the monsoon season. The team has found some of the grasslands suitable for Bengal florican; however, the presence of Bengal florican was not confirmed.

Ecological Studies & Conservation Status Assessment on Threatened Species of Genus Vibrissaphora in China (2007)
The team has finished all planned conservation work to save threatened Vibrissaphora toads in China. In November the popular scientific magazine Chinese National Geography published an article featuring field-work during project implementation which has been widely read.

Conservation Research of Cao Vit Gibbon in China (2008)
The critically endangered Cao Vit gibbon (Nomascus nasutus) has been listed as one of the most Endangered 25 primates in 2008-2010. The aim of this project is to understand the ecological needs of Cao Vit gibbons in their natural habitat.

CROC - Crocodile Rehabilitation, Observance and Conservation, Philippines (2005)
Crocodiles have an image problem. In the Philippines, people associate crocodiles with danger and greed. Crocodiles continue to be killed out of fear or because they are considered vermin.
The CROC project aims to mobilize public support for the conservation of the Philippine crocodile (Crocodylus mindorensis). 

Small carnivore conservation in the Mekong Delta, Vietnam (2006)
The field team of the Carnivore and Pangolin Conservation Program came face-to-face with two Hairy-nosed Otters during their latest surveys of U Minh Ha National Park, Mekong Delta Vietnam. The Hairy-nosed Otter (Lutra sumatrana) is arguably the rarest species of otter in the world and this is the first time its presence has been confirmed anywhere in Vietnam since 2000. Survey of the Four-horned Antelope in South India (2008)
The team has been surveying scrub forests of the Madanapalle Forest Range in the lower Eastern Ghats of Andhra Pradesh and has now covered 15% of the survey area. Spirits are high as they have identified six middens and many hoof-prints in locations with strikingly similar habitat structure, substrate, and vegetation composition.

Read more about projects in Asia...


Conservation Action Planning and Sakhalin taimen: Sakhalin, Russia (2008)
The last two months have been a busy period for the team. Two team members travelled to Alaska to participate in a Conservation Action Plan (CAP) workshop which focused on the development of conservation targets, assessing viability, evaluating threats, setting conservation goals, and approaches to monitoring.

Conservation and further research of distribution of the critically endangered Darevsky's viper (Vipera darevskii) in Armenia (2007)
The team has maintained a focus on educating children about ecological problems and nature conservation activities in Armenia, especially regarding the Darevsky’s viper, the threats it faces and the urgent measures being undertaken to conserve the species.

Community-based Conservation of Lake Kuyucuk, Kars, Turkey (2008)
Between August and October the Kuyucuk Ringing Station was run by ringers from South Africa, Hungary and the UK with the support of Rakesh Vyas and 22 university students. 1,813 birds from 68 species were ringed bringing the bird list to a total of 191 species.

Conservation of Rare Plants of Lake Baikal, Russia: Monitoring of Plants and Education of Local Community (2008)
In September representatives from the U.S. Forest Service and from two Mongolian NGOs attended a workshop led by the team to promote collaboration between organizations involved in natural resource use. The goal of the workshop was to provide training and advice to scientists and NGOs which aim to attract members of the public to special events where local knowledge and expertise can be shared.

Read more about projects in Eurasia...


Conservation of threatened wildlife in southwestern Amazonia, Brazil (2008)
To date, the team has completed standardized line-transects with intermittent point-counts in seven logged plots and eight unlogged plotsto estimate the density and/or occupancy of indicator bird species. In addition they characterized the vegetation structure of the point-counts to note differences in habitat between unlogged and logged areas that may affect target species.

Alder Amazon Project: conservation through borders; Argentina - Bolivia (2008)
In Argentina outstanding results have been accomplished by working with local authorities and local people in the towns of El Fuerte and Palma Sola. Authorities in both towns have passed a law declaring the Alder Amazon as a Natural Monument, and the species’ habitat has been given special protection.

Conservation Field Training for Young Park-rangers in Argentina, Argentina (2007)
Since completion of this project in May 2008, the team has been carrying out a variety of new projects involving student park ranger and park rangers in the the Urugua-í Wildlife Reserve. These have included habitat restoration, managing a native plant nursery and reducing incidents of poaching through awareness raising.

Evaluation of Threatened Amphibians in Colombian Key Sites (2008)
Colombia has the largest number of amphibian species of any country in the world (approximately 800) but it also contains the largest number of threatened species (208), many of which are restricted to single locations. Focusing on 15 species, six of which are Critically Endangered, the team is carrying out surveys to determine the distribution of amphibian populations, and also carrying out an environmental education campaign to mitigate threats to amphibians and their habitat.

Advancing Seabird Conservation in Peru’s Artisanal Fishery Through Education and Research (2007)
Throughout 2008 the team has conducted 13 workshops in coordination with the marine authorities to teach fishermen how to handle and safely release seabirds at nine ports along the Peruvian coast.

Read more about projects in Latin America... 


Conservation of the Syrian Serin in Lebanon (2006)
In recent months the team has been completing the final version of a board game which will be used to promote conservation and raise environmental awareness in schools across Lebanon.
Over the coming months the team will be focusing on hunting laws, and the illegal trade of species and taking advantage of the good political situation and the elections in April.

Read more about projects in the Middle East...



WCS Research Fellowship Program

The aim of the Research Fellowship Program (RFP) is to provide promising young individual conservationists with an opportunity to conduct advanced and applied biodiversity conservation research to develop key research and associated skills (planning, problem-solving, communication) necessary for conservation practitioners.

Click here to read RFP project updates


CLP Internship Programme

The aim of CLP internships is to provide future conservation leaders with on-the-job training and exposure to day-to-day workings of conservation NGOs, whilst providing programme partners with talented individuals. Interns are selected by and work with program partners in their respective organisations.

2008 CLP Interns

  • Development of the Brazilian Bird Conservation Centre, Tatiana Pongiluppi
  • Researching the North-western Pre-Caspian saiga population, particularly through the work of ‘The Center for Wild Animals in Kalmykia’, Nadezhda Arylova 
  • Pre-survey of Community Environmental Education in a Human-Bear Conflict Area, Yufang Gao
  • Click here to read the latest Intern updates


    Final Reports Received

    These recently concluded projects have had some exciting results. For a copy of the full report, send an email request to

  • Saving the Blue-billed Curassow: Building a Secure Future - Colombia (2006)
  • Vision 2005: An Integrated Conservation and Development Project for the Kikuyu Escarpment Forest (2005)
  • CROC - Crocodile Rehabilitation, Observance and Conservation, Philippines (2005)
  • Conservation of Herpetofauna in Bantimurung Bulusaraung National Park, South Sulawesi, Indonesia (2007)
  • Assessing the Conservation Status of Tigers in West Sumatra (2008)
  • Developing a Community Forest Buffer for the Bhimashankar Wildlife Sanctuary, India (2007)
  • Calayan Rail Project II: Building stakeholders’ capacity to conserve an island-endemic species (2007)
  • Dracaena-MAP-Egypt: Dracaena ombet Monitoring & Assessment Project in Gabel Elba Protected Area (GEPA), Egypt (2007)
  • Project Atelopus: Conservation of Critically Endangered Amphibians, Colombia (2007)
  • Conservation Action Planning and Sakhalin taimen in Sakhalin, Russia (2008)
  • Operation Moheli: Linking Conservation of Marine Flagship Species with Sustainable Development, Comoros (2006)
  • Status and population trends of amphibians in relation to microenvironment at a montane forest, southern Mexico (2007)


    Project Websites

    Check out project websites for updated news and images from award winning teams in the field:

  • Assessment of Seabird Bycatch, Peru, (2003)
  • Bat Census in Crimean Caves, Ukraine (2004)
  • Bat Conservation Madagascar (2004)
  • Calayan Rail, Philippines (2007)
  • Conservacion Argentina, Argentina (2006)
  • Community-based Conservation of Lake Kuyucuk, Kars, Turkey (2008)
  • Community Centered Conservation (C3), Comoros (2006)
  • Conservation Comoros, Comoros Islands (2005)
  • Community Forest Buffer, India (2007)
  • CROC, Philippines (2005)
  • Ecology and Conservation of the Chilean Dolphin (2002)
  • Giant Otter Conservation, Bolivia (2003)
  • Iranian Cheetah, Iran (2006)
  • Katala Quest, Philippines (2003)
  • Marsh Deer Project, Argentina, (2005)
  • Mpingo Conservation Project, Tanzania (2004)
  • Project Hapalopsittaca, Colombia (2002)
  • Project Karumbé, Uruguay (2001)
  • Project Knuckles, Sri Lanka (2005)
  • Seabirds Argentina (2007)
  • Sea Turtle Research and Conservation, Venezuela (1999)
  • Soul of the Andes, Argentina (2003)
  • Tandroy Conservation Trust, Madagascar (2003)