Conservation challenges

Conservation Challenges

Status of Wild Populations

Endemic to the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), the bonobo is threatened by poaching, habitat loss and the pet trade. Conserving the species calls for increasing resources – financial and material support, additional law enforcement personnel, and professional training – for existing parks and reserves as well as establishing additional protected areas where bonobos occur.
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Hunting and the Bushmeat/Ivory Trade

Commercial, unregulated hunting or poaching is the single largest threat to bonobos and to all wildlife in DRC. Poaching is driven by the increasing demand for bushmeat and ivory, and, to a lesser extent, by the illegal trade in wild animals for pets.
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Forest Loss and Degradation

Loss of suitable rainforest habitat constitutes a serious long-term threat to bonobos. In DRC, a growing population and a lack of livelihood options place tremendous pressure on the country’s forests for firewood, timber, and agricultural production. Mounting global interest for wood products, industrial-scale farming (palm oil), mineral resources and petroleum exploration further jeopardize DRC’s forests and biodiversity.
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