Yesterday an international expedition team coordinated by BINCO left for the Njesi Plateau, one of highest inselbergs in northern Mozambique. With little information on its biodiversity available, this expedition hopes to fill a void that will help evaluate its natural and conservation value. The expedition will visit three mountain peaks, Chitiagal, Sanga and the Njesi plateau and explore multiple taxa on each through well-established rapid assessment protocols. This expedition is sponsored by the Critical Ecosystem Partnership Fund, Rift Valley Corporation, Royal Geographical Society and WWF Belgium.
BINCO set up an information booth at the open weekend of 'the old sand quarry' project in Korbeek-lo (Belgium). The project aim is to transform the old sand quarry into a small nature reserve with high biodiversity. The project was founded by Guido Rooseleer and Annemie Geldhoof, who involve the neighbours and local community to help preserve and sustain this educational nature reserve. BINCO is doing long-term monitoring of multiple species at the old sand quarry. You can visit their website (only available in Dutch) on www.deoudezandgroeve.be
BINCO, along with Friends of the Earth Malta, is opening a call for an ecological workshop in Malta from 21 till 27 September 2016. The workshop announces the start of a long-term biodiversity monitoring project on the island and we are looking for enthusiastic Belgian candidates to join us. Candidates should have the Belgian nationality and be younger than 30 years old.
The whole project is supported by the Erasmus+ Learning Mobility of Individuals Programme of the European Commission. Consequently, the workshop is fully sponsored, including flight, accommodation and living costs.
BINCO aims to support biological education in Zanzibar. In 2012, we visited schools in the South Region to see what contributions our organisation could make. After discussion with local teachers and directors, we decided to collect our own didactic material in Belgium. Special thanks to Herwig Schroijen and Magda Verbiest of Primary school “De Graankorrel”, Blauberg (Herselt) who were responsible for most of this years’ collection. Over the past year, a water tower has been built in Jambiani to provide the biology and chemistry labs with running water. The water tank and the construction of the tower were financially supported with the revenue of our annual BINCO Quiz. This is a small, yet important step to support an improvement in education with a focus on ecology and biodiversity in Zanzibar. It is possible that this project will continue to grow under the working title ‘Educate for Life”.
This project plays a part in a long-term collaboration between the school in Jambiani and the Belgian non-profit “Vrienden van Jambiani”. This organisation also supports a secondary school, local economic activities (including an agricultural cooperative), and a medical centre in the village. Over the past few years, they have also been supporting other secondary schools in the South Region.
During our expedition in Southwest Ethiopia last year (2014), we discovered a crested rat (Lophiomys imhausi) on one of our camera traps which, to our knowledge, is the first capture of this species on a camera trap in the wild. This elusive rodent has never before been recorded in Afromontane rainforest West of the Rift valley. In this short note, published in the African Journal of Ecology, we add our observation to its previously known distribution.
The original camera trap recording:
Our finding of a worker of the shining guest ant (August 2014, during the translocation of wood ant nest domes) was not the only one in recent years. According to the Red List of endangered species the shining guest ant status is vulnerable, but probably the species is more common than we think. Her presence often goes unnoticed because of the hidden lifestyle and small size. Observations of this species, along with a suggestion to revise the Red List status were brought together in this article (English abstract only) in the Bulletin of the Royal Belgian Entomological Society.
The first results of our expedition to Southwest Ethiopia are published in our third Biodiversity Express Survey. The Gera forest is one of the larger remaining fragments of forest left in the country. The biodiversity within the forest, however, is not well understood. Therefore, we surveyed amphibian, mammal and ground beetle diversity along with opportunistic observations of birds, reptiles, butterflies and dragonflies. This report will be updated with new information once it becomes available.
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BINCO npo collects essential biodiversity data on poorly studied regions and threatened taxa to facilitate conservation organisations and governments to prioritize conservation actions and protect our natural capital. BINCO npo is a consortium of scientists and volunteers that work on a voluntary basis. Any financial contribution is most welcome and will make a difference.