The OSO Forest Initiative is a partnership between NCF, Whitley Wildlife Conservation Trust and Forest Research Institute of Nigeria (FRIN) with the support of the Leventis Foundation and Environmental Resource Management, UK.
Reacting to the development, NCF Director General, Mr. Adeniyi Karunwi, said that the deployment of camera traps and the positive results coming out are signs of NCF’s commitment to conserving the nation’s forest habitats with particular attention on the OSO Forest.
“This is part of NCF’s efforts to ensure the survival of species in the OSO Forest Reserve,” he declared.
Similarly, Dr. Andrew Bowkett from the Whitley Wildlife Conservation Trust, which also funds conservation work as a partner in the OSO Forest Initiative, said it was tremendous news.
“It seemed likely that this population had gone extinct due to the dramatic increases in logging and hunting over the years. It has come as something of a surprise, as all previous reports indicated that the closest chimps were in a hilly area in a remote corner of the reserve far from where the camera-trap was set up,” added Bowkett.
He said further that the survival of chimpanzees and other large mammals in such a threatened forest so close to Lagos, considering the level of urbanization and deforestation, “gives us hope for the Initiative.”