New Protected Area Designated in the Ho West District of Ghana
Happy to announce the legal establishment of a new government declared community-based protected area in Ghana. On 14th September 2018 in Accra, the Ghana Assembly Press published in its 59th bulletin of the local government acts and bye-laws, the legal designation of an 847-acre protected area (Onepone Endangered Species Refuge) in the Ho West District of Ghana. The new protected area, named after the traditional name of the two communities (Amedzofe and Gbadzeme) who donated land for its creation, will safeguard habitat for numerous threatened species. Herp Conservation Ghana, a local conservation NGO worked closely with its international partner (Rainforest Trust) and other funders (IUCN-PPI, Prince Bernard Nature Fund) to establish this new protected area in Ghana’s Togo-Volta Hills.
This new protected area, will safeguard the last remnant forest habitats situated within the Dahomey Gap-a savannah corridor that separates the Upper and Lower Guinea forests in West Africa. These remnant forests contain many forest species that are isolated from the more expansive rain forest blocks to the west and east and therefore a priority conservation site that harbors endemic wildlife.
“We are excited that finally we have been able to create a safe haven for the Evolutionary Distinct and Globally Endangered Togo slippery frog (Conraua derooi), which is endemic to this new protected area and few adjoining areas” says Herp-Ghana’s founder and director Dr. Caleb Ofori Boateng. The Endangered Ukami Reed Frog, the Critically Endangered Hooded Vulture, the Vulnerable Black-bellied and White-bellied Pangolins and a plethora of endemic butterfly and amphibian species all reside within this forested habitat and will now be protected by this new protected area.
The establishment of this new protected area became necessary as a result of an increasing pressure on this unique forest due to rapidly expanding human settlements, logging, slash and burn agriculture and a ferocious “bushmeat” hunting business.
Herp-Ghana is very grateful to all current and previous funders who have helped the organization in diverse ways to reach this feat including, The Future for Nature Foundation, the ZSL EDGE Fellowship Program, the New England Biolabs Foundation, The Van Teinhovien Foundation, the Zoos Victoria, the Mohammed bin Zayeed Foundation and the Rufford Small Grants. We are also grateful to the support received from the Ho West District Assembly, The Ghana Wildlife Division and the Chiefs and people of Amedzofe and Gbadzeme.
[Herp Conservation Ghana]