HerpGhana attends ISS International Summit in Ethiopia, March-April 2014
HerpGhana CEO Wins Future for Nature Award 2014
We proudly present you Caleb Ofori Boateng, the CEO of HerpGhana, one of the Future for Nature Award winners 2014. The award ceremony will be held on 25th April 2014 in Royal Burgers’ Zoo, Netherlands. Please Read about his work below.
“My conservation efforts have focused on protecting the last remaining population of the critically endangered Togo slippery frog in Ghana. This frog was recently rediscovered after nearly four decades in which it was believed to be extinct. However, there are two isolated and small populations left in two isolated sites: the Atewa Hills and the Togo-Volta Hills. These, however, face imminent extinction due to human consumption and habitat destruction.
I developed an outreach program dubbed “conservation evangelism,” in which I obtain talk time in existing religious programs that people consistently attend as part of community life. Thus I am able to integrate my conservation message into these religions program. Because local people generally trust information provided by religious centers, my conservation message is better accepted, which results in greater behavioral change.
In the past five years, my organization has successfully lobbied to stop mining in the Atewa Hills, and our conservation evangelism outreach programs have resulted in reduced hunting pressure and human consumption. Our past successes, however, may not be enough to ensure the survival of the Togo slippery frog in the long-term. To do so would require establishing the Atewa Hills as a fully protected National Park. In addition to protecting the slippery frog, an Atewa Hills National Park would also help to protect some other sympatric and threatened species: chimpanzees, the long-tailed pangolin, Geoffroy’s pied colobus and the Nimba flycatcher.
Through my pioneering efforts, and those of my volunteers, threats to this frog species have been significantly reduced. We have successfully lobbied with the government to revoke mining licenses in critical frog habitat. Additionally, we have worked with local people to reduce threats due to hunting and human consumption, resulting in stabilized and even increasing populations of the Togo slippery frog.
I would also aim to capture, transport and re-introduce the Togo slippery frog into secure wildlife sanctuaries within its historic range. These additional viable populations would reduce the probability that an event such as a fire or disease could cause the extinction of the entire species”