LOCATION: Tsinjoriake, Madagascar
TARGET SPECIES: Lemurs and many endemic species
STATUS: ESTABLISHED (SUSTAINED BY LOCAL LEADERS)
Between 2007 and 2009, CC’s founder Dr. Robert Horwich was instrumental in providing technical assistance to a group of nine communities to create a community conservation network around a conservation area in SW Madagascar named Tsinjoriake. The new community co-managed protected area, located in southwestern Madagascar, was formally established by the Malagasy Government in 2015 and has both IUCN (International Union for the Conservation of Nature) categories III and V, that of natural monument and of a protected harmonious land and seascape. Tsinjoriake in the local Malagasy dialect means a “panorama of land and sea.”
Now over 10 years later, CC has returned to provide technical support service and catalytic funding for a new generation of community leaders. The current support from CC is being used to support the community association, TAMIA, to update their management plan, restore critical forests and mangroves, initiate environmental education programs, and complete post-pandemic monitoring of the community protected area limits to mitigate evolving threats to the area. TAMIA (Tahosoa Alalndriake Mitambatse Ianatsono Andatabo) is a network association of nine communities protecting the area. Their name translates to “healthy union of forest, land and people between Andatabo and Ianatsono” with Saint Augustin and Ianatsono being the northern and southern borders of the protected area.
The Tsinjoriake community co-managed protected area is a globally unique land and seascape that provides habitat for locally endemic biodiversity of global importance and ecosystem services that sustain the livelihoods of the people living in the area. This protected area has cultural and spiritual importance for the local Tanalaga and Vezo ethnic groups as there are many sacred forest sites as well as other natural areas which are used for specific ceremonies such as offerings to the ancestors.
The Tsinjoriake protected area has globally unique biodiversity with many locally endemic faunal and flora species. The terrestrial zone is composed of xerophilic “spiny” forest where floral inventories have identified 126 genera of 59 families of plant species, many found only within the community conservation zone. Of the 13 Moringa tree species in the world, three are found in Madagascar and two are locally endemic. All three of these species are located within the Tsinjoriake protected area. These species provide for a variety of local traditional medicines and Moringa oleifera also provides an important nutritional source for the local population.
The protected area is also habitat for three lemur species that include the infamous ring-tailed lemur, Lemur catta,(known locally as “Maki”) and two mouse-lemur species, Microcebus griseorufus and Microcebus murinus. 77 bird species have been recorded in the protected area, including 30 species endemic to Madagascar and seven endemic to the south-west of the country.