Success at various international film festivals!

The Documentary “Alaotra –  Endangered Treasures of Madagascar” produced by Dorcon Film, and in close collaboration with MWC, has already been selected for four international film festivals!

Lorbeeren Alaotra Film_v02

Alaotra film_Dorcon_

Description: Documentary, 72mins, EN/FR/MG with English and French Subtitles.

Summary: A group of European and Malagasy researcher and conservationists want to save the last of the rare Alaotra Gentle Lemur – called “Bandro” – in Madagascar. As habitat – crucial for survival of the Bandro – continues to be destroyed, they are reverting to extraordinary measures: Playing an educational, reality-based boardgame with the locals to change behaviours and turn the wheel of extinction around.

Follow us to some of Madagascar’s hidden places – far away from the touristic centers – to find out what can happen when derivates of our modern times seep slowly into traditional ways of living.

Interested in watching the film? You can do so here!

Training at Durrell Conservation Academy

MWC Coordinator Lucile Raveloarimalala was selected as participant of the CEPF-funded training at Durrell Conservation Academy!

Lucile perceives this 8 week course as a unique chance for her to expand and deepen her knowledge and experience in conservation. She is looking forward to learning new methods and approaches to implement them in innovative, synergistic projects, thereby further increasing her conservation impact. She is especially looking forward to the courses and practical exercises in monitoring, community-based conservation, protected area management, project management and fundraising. Further, she is keen to learn more about scientific reporting and leadership skills, and to act as multiplier within MWC and with local partners, to likewise increase their capacities for conservation.

Congratulations on this great opportunity!Durrell Cepf training

New paper out “Perception of change: Narratives and strategies of farmers in Madagascar”

New paper out “Perception of change: Narratives and strategies of farmers in Madagascar” by Natasha Stoudmann, Patrick O. Waeber, Ihoby H. Randriamalala, Claude A. Garcia (Available here https://authors.elsevier.com/a/1Vm6B2eyKFVpjq)

Summary: Farmers in the Anthropocene are exposed to drivers of change stemming from multiple sources, sometimes distant from their immediate neighbourhood. These socioeconomic and environmental interactions over distances are referred to as telecoupling. How do they impact the rural communities in developing countries? How do poor farmers perceive change and react to it? This study explores these questions with rural communities of Madagascar’s Maningory watershed. We use the Q methodology, developed for the quantitative study of subjectivity in order to investigate the perception of change of these farmers and their reactive behaviour to perceived stresses and shocks. Participants recognise experiencing changes stemming from a wide variety of areas of their lives, from decreasing quantity of rain to increasing school fees. The five resulting factors from the Q method illustrate a large panel of possible behaviours in the face of change, potentially linked to different levels of vulnerability amongst farmers. Participants appear to largely adopt reactive measures and are often left to their own devices. A lack of human and social capital forces them to tap into the natural capital within their grasp, increasing the pressure on natural ecosystems and their resources. A stronger involvement of governmental institutions could in part alleviate the situation. Increasing risk awareness as well as strengthening knowledge exchanges and experience transfer that take into account resource dependency and gender differences is recommended to increase the resilience of the socio-ecological system.

International conference on natural wetlands of Madagascar

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MWC took part in the “International conference on natural wetlands of Madagascar”, 12th-14th October 2016.
The resilience of natural wetlands were at the heart of the conference organized by the Alarela project (ETH Zurich, Switzerland) at the École Supérieure des Sciences Agronomiques – Université d’Antananarivo.

Watch the new Alaotra trailer!

“A malagasy film dedicated to countrymen, particularly those living around Lake Alaotra. A second film in the editing stages, created by the AlaReLa project and entitled “the voice/the thirst of the Alaotra”. This expression addresses fundamental values, whether they be those relating to the physical environment (Lake Alaotra itself), or those of the surrounding communities. This title is also somewhat paradoxal, as the lake is a water reservoir and at the same time deficient when it comes to quenching thirst. It can however invoque water deficiency or express various frustrations experienced by residents… The complete film version will be released this year, in 2016.”

Watch the trailer here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=M8262hZ117A.

Filming at the MWC headquarter in Germany

In the realms of the project “Alaotra – Endangered Treasures of Madagascar”, Dorcon Film visited the MWC headquarter in Germany to document the conservation efforts being conducted in Hanover. During a meeting with Prof. Jonah Ratsimbazafy, intensified future collaboration and conservation actions between GERP and MWC were discussed as well. Photo by Dorcon Film.

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Call for Papers: Management of Natural Wetlands in Madagascar: Using Landscape Approaches to Integrate Research and Practice

Call for Papers: Management of Natural Wetlands in Madagascar: Using Landscape Approaches to Integrate Research and Practice

An international conference in Antananarivo, Madagascar from the 12th to 14th October 2016, at the University of Antananarivo, Ecole Supérieure des Sciences Agronomiques

The wetlands of Madagascar are extremely diverse, with ten sites recognized by the Ramsar convention for their importance, and numerous wetlands benefitting from protection as parks and reserves across the island. The biodiversity importance of the Malagasy wetlands is due to many endemic birds, fish, a lemur, a carnivore as well as numerous plants and aquatic invertebrates, but these areas are also the basis of livelihoods for many farmers and fisher folk dependent on the lakes, marshes and rivers to ensure their subsistence.

A wide range of international, national and local stakeholders play essential roles in the management of these wetlands, for example the local people, researchers, managers and the authorities. There are various landscape based approaches for managing wetlands in Madagascar, and this international conference is being organized to bring together a broad range of experts involved in wetland management, including decision makers, donors as well as managers and researchers.

Programme for the International Conference:

Tuesday 11th October (evening): Exhibition of Photos from Lake Alaotra at the Institut Français de Madagascar.

Wednesday 12th  October : Plenary Presentation by Conference Host, Professor Bruno Ramamonjisoa ; Presentation of the results from the AlaReLa Research Project; Round table discussions with stakeholders from the Lake Alaotra region. A practical training workshop will then be held on how to publish scientific articles in the journal Madagascar Conservation & Development.

Thursday 13th  October : Presentations by local site managers of natural wetland sites from across Madagascar, as well as findings of researchers and by other stakeholders for landscape scale approaches and their application to wetlands.  Plenary presentations by Professor Jean-Pierre Sorg and Dr Claude Garcia.

Friday 14th October : Presentations by decision makers, donors and NGO representatives.  Plenary presentation by Mr. Oely Rakotomamonjy, Regional Officer for Africa and Madagascar at the Ramsar Secretariat.

Plenary Speakers:

Mr. Oely Rakotomamonjy, Regional Officer for Africa and Madagascar, RAMSAR Secretariat, Switzerland

Professor Jean-Pierre Sorg, Emeritus Professor, ETH Zurich.

Dr Claude Garcia, ETH Zurich and CIRAD.

Professeur Bruno Ramamonjisoa, ESSA, Université d’Antananarivo.

Objectives of the Conference  :

  1. To share the results of the research from the AlaReLa project in Lake Alaotra with other managers of wetlands interested in landscape based approaches.
  2. To bring together site managers, researchers and other stakeholders of Malagasy Wetland Landscapes in order to :
  • Share expertise and research findings as well as individual experience and best practices from conservation stakeholders in different regions of Madagascar;
  • To support initiatives and efforts being undertaken by others to establish a Malagasy national network of wetland managers;
  • To reinforce the capacity of wetland site managers and NGO staff in the publication of their research results and lessons/results from management.
  • Working directly with editors and reviewers to start the process of publication of a special issue on landscape management of wetlands in the journal Madagascar Conservation & Development (MCD).


Host Committee:
Professor Bruno Ramamonjisoa, Dr Patrick Ranjatson, Dr Harifidy Rakoto-Ratsimba,ESSA, University of Antananarivo.

Organization Committee: Tahiana Ramananantoandro, Ihoby Randriamalala, Natacha Stoudmann, Lucienne Wilmé, Bruno Ramamonjisoa, Patrick Waeber, Barry Ferguson.

Scientific Committee: Lucienne Wilmé, Bruno Ramamonjisoa, Patrick Waeber, Barry Ferguson.

How to take part in the conference

If you are interested in presenting your work during the conference, we invite you to submit a declaration of interest before the 1st September 2016.  Please specify if you wish to present orally or through a poster, and if you envisage submitting a manuscript for publication of a scientific article in the wetland special issue of MCD.

Abstracts (maximum 200 words) of your presentation must be submitted before the 14th of September 2016.  We ask you to submit declaration of interest, abstracts by sending them to the conference email address: conferencezoneshumides2016@gmail.com

The decisions of the scientific committee will be communicated no later than the 19th September 2016.

Visit Madagascar Environmental Justice Network at: http://madagascarenvironmentaljustice.ning.com/?xg_source=msg_mes_network

Learning to give

Incredible!  The American School Antananarivo started a fundraising campaign to help safing the Alaotran Gentle Lemur. The Second Grade and their teacher Jennifer raised enough funds to allow a field trip for 24 students and teachers to visit the Alaotran Gentle Lemur in its natural habitat! With this, they support a crucial component of MWC’s educational work for the long-term survival of this unique lemur!

More details about the successful campaign are provided here (subitem “Learning to give”): http://secondswithmsjennifer.weebly.com/blog