Afromontane rainforest is predominantly found in the Southwest of Ethiopia. The area is part of the “Eastern Afromontane biodiversity hotspot” and is characterized by a rich fauna and flora with many endemic species. This region experiences a rapid economic development with fast growing expansion of settlements and plantations of exotic timber, coffee and tea. The remnant forest patches are under increasing pressure from logging and disturbance. To help protect the natural forest, BINCO collaborated with MELCA for three months in 2016 to collect standardized biodiversity data and train forest guards in biodiversity surveys. A team of experts visited Sheka forest, near Tepi, a Unesco Man and Biosphere reserve and studied mammals (camera traps), birds and herpetofauna.
BINCO fieldwork is geared to gain information on the diversity, occurrence and distribution of most taxa to generate essential information needed to take informed decisions for conservation. Besides inventory and surveying, this project evaluated the quality and biological importance of core zones within the biosphere reserve, indicated by local communities to receive the highest protection.