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The Green or Guinea Turaco is one of the special birds at Farasuto. Photo: Chrumps (Wikimedia Commons)
The Green or Guinea Turaco is one of the special birds at Farasuto. Photo: Chrumps (Wikimedia Commons)Enlarge image

New Gambian reserve


Posted on: 08 Apr 2010

The Farasuto Forest, in The Gambia, became known to birders only in 2008 and a new management plan for a reserve there has just been prepared. It is home to a wide range of sought-after birds and other wildlife.

 

Forest destruction has left The Gambia with only five known relict patches of closed-canopy Guinea-Congo forest comprising tall native trees (10m or more) with a continuous and closed canopy. Farasuto is one of these and while it only covers 2.8 ha, it is still important for its special bird community.

 

The new management plan aims to:

  • establish the rarity, significance, value and worth of in general and of Farasuto, as one of five known remaining patches of Guinea-Congo forest in The Gambia,
  • support Farasuto’s value with records of significant forest specialist birds and other species
  • establish the cultural and economic place of the site within the context of local villages establish an agreed Vision for Farasuto, which capitalises on its tourism potential without compromising its wildlife resource
  • identify the projects necessary to achieve the vision and consider a programme of works to complete them

 

The plan has been devised by John and Peter Tucker, two birders from Britain. It includes projects for the creation of pools, and the building of a hide and a visitor centre with educational resources.

 

About 300 bird species have been recorded there and special forest bird species include: African Goshawk, Ahanta Francolin, Green Turaco, Little Greenbul, Leaflove, Grey-headed Bristlebill, Green Crombec, Yellow-breasted Apalis and Green Hylia. It also supports a wide range of special mammals, reptiles and amphibians, insects and plants.

 

For a full list of birds and details of other wildlife in the Farasuto Forest Community Nature Reserve, plus the detailed management plan, go to www.farasuto.org




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