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Workshop on the African Great Ape Bushmeat Crisis
IPS/ASP Congress, Madison, Wisconsin
Dr. Anthony L. Rose
The Biosynergy Institute

Thousands of gorillas, chimpanzees, and bonobos are eaten each year across West and Central Africa. Forest bushmeat represents over half the animal protein consumed by millions of people in the region. Many conservationists see the great ape bushmeat crisis as comparable to the elephant ivory trade or the netting of dolphins. The Bushmeat Project has been organized to address this crisis on all fronts, and to help those now reliant on bushmeat for income and sustenance to develop wildlife-friendly alternatives suitable to their ecosystems and cultures.

The Bushmeat Crisis Workshop at Madison began with an overview of the bushmeat trade -- its origins, patterns of commercialization, expanse of impact, and the diverse ways and means required to confront the commerce in all its complexity. Karl Ammann's superb photos and video documentary material demonstrated the harsh and commanding realities of the situation, followed by description of some of the more creative innovations being tried and considered to effect lasting change.

There was a guided discussion and problem solving session. The first order of business was to assess what primatologists can do, given our rich and varied experience. The workshop then divided into focus groups for detailed treatment of six or seven different "solution tracks", selected according to attendees' interests. Participants wanting to continue collaboration in specific action areas -- from strategic planning to bushmeat census taking -- will be invited to join task forces and become associates of The Bushmeat Project.

Anyone wanting more information about the workshop, please drop a note directly to .    Thanks to David Abbott and other Congress organizers for adding the Bushmeat Crisis to the agenda.

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