Ben Phalan and Luciana Leite de Araújo got married recently in Arembepe, Bahia, Brazil. Both are environmentally concerned and decided to offset the 133 tonnes of carbon emissions created by themselves, their family and friends in travelling to the wedding. Although most of their guests were from within Brazil, their multi-nation guests came from as far away as Salvador, Oregon and Philadelphia in the US, Prague, England, Scotland and Ireland.
They chose two projects dear to them – REGUA and the Golden Lion Tamarin project. Ben and Luciana also gave away native “Ipé Rosa” seedlings to Brazilian friends at the wedding in commemoration of their union.
Thank you Ben and Luciana and may your trees grow and grow. The funds will be used for REGUA’s restoration project and will enable us to plant around 400 trees.
Nothing could give us a greater thrill than the news announced by Debby Pain on the penultimate day of the Britsh Birdfair that the World Land Trust had achieved their target for the Olympic Forest Reserve Appeal; the purchase of the Paloma property situated high in the Sao Miguel valley within the Guapiaçu watershed. Dan Bradbury’s team at the World Land Trust had taken under four months to reach the target, showing how supportive and determined everyone has been to reach this goal.
On behalf of everyone working at REGUA, we wish to dearly thank every single individual supporter who contributed towards this appeal. We can now say that this forested property of 221 hectares full of tall trees and rare orchids, together with it’s animals, can be safely integrated in the REGUA reserve contributing to the permanent conservation of another important section of Atlantic Forest. Thank you all so much.
Though hunting has been severely reduced at REGUA as a result of patrols by our rangers, it occasionally still occurs. Hunting in the area is becoming less popular – the older hunters are giving up and the younger people are not so interested in this “sport” and as a result of the development of our trail system and a decade of environmental education this pernicious action has been largely eliminated, and overall the population of animals at REGUA has increased. Camera traps have caught video of the Puma Puma concolor and bands Collared Peccaries Pecari tajacu foraging on the trails.
Traditionally, hunters have respected REGUA’s limits, and gunshots at night are a thing of the past, but very occasionally we see evidence of some traps and snares. As the REGUA reserve increases in size, the rangers are stretched to cover the whole area. and it was quite disconcerting that one member of the local community received this photograph of a Lowland Paca Cuniculus paca kill on a distant area of REGUA land.
It is painful to see the cold blooded killing of this animal and it reminds us that there are those who do not respect REGUA’s efforts to stop this sort of senseless slaughter. It reminds us that though biodiversity is rebounding from distant days, there are people out there who do not share our passion and do not care. This should encourage us to keep hard on the trail and stick to our guns – that we are gaining ground and that the forests are becoming healthier, and that our objective is worth every effort.
One of our UK partners, the World Land Trust, is currently appealing to raise £40,000 to allow REGUA to buy an area of forest in the Guapiaçu valley that is very much under threat from hunting as well as urbanisation. By adding this area of forest to the reserve we will be able to patrol the forest and deter hunters. Please help by making a donation to the World Land Trust Olympic Forest Reserve Appeal. Any contribution would be very gratefully received. Thank you.
In partnership with the World Land Trust, REGUA has launched a campaign to raise funds to purchase a highly threatened area of Atlantic Forest located in the Guapiaçu Valley.
Called Paloma Coelho, this 89.5 hectare (221 acre) area of high quality forest is under threat from hunting and deforestation, threatening the survival of the rich flora and fauna found here. In addition the property protects the streams that feed the Guapiaçu River, an important water supply for the local community.
The most effective way to conserve this important area of forest is for REGUA to purchase the land and incorporate it into the reserve. The Olympic Forest Reserve Appeal aims to raise £40,000 to enable this to become a reality. Please help us save this forest by making a donation.
Great news! A US based company, Treeshirts have started to donate US$5 to REGUA for every `TreeShirt’ that they sell. That’s one tree planted for every shirt sold! Treat yourself or buy one as a present. The t shirts can be shipped worldwide. They are made from sustainable fibres of bamboo, hemp and organic cotton.
Go to their website to make your purchase http://www.mytreeshirts.com/#!shop/cy7u
By proudly wearing your TreeShirt you will be raising awareness about deforestation and encourage others to learn more about the importance of saving our rainforests.
Recent years have seen a rapid rise in urbanisation within the upper Guapiaçu valley. The new tarmac road to Guapiaçu village has brought with it an influx of people, many of whom have chosen to build weekend homes in the area, clearing areas of forest in the process. The most effective way to ensure the long-term protection of the Atlantic Forest of the upper Guapiaçu valley is to purchase as many land plots as possible to incorporate into the reserve.
The World Land Trust in the UK have been funding land purchases for REGUA since 2005. They have launched a new appeal to raise £25,000 required to buy a small plot in the currently unprotected ‘Matumbo Gap’ – a series of properties situated between two separate parts of REGUA. This property is crucial to our aim of creating a forest corridor between the two parts of the reserve.
Land prices in the upper Guapiaçu valley have risen sharply in recent years due to very high demand, and this plot may not be for sale for long. To help us secure this vital property please visit the World Land Trust website to make a donation.
The Reserva Ecológica de Guapiaçu (REGUA) was established in 2001 to protect the remaining forests of the Guapiaçu valley, about 70 kilometres north of Rio de Janeiro. The most effective way to ensure this long-term protection is through land purchase, to create a continuous protected nature reserve around the valley sides. REGUA already protects over 18,000 acres and has planted over 250,000 trees in its efforts to restore cattle pasture to forest.
After 12 years of steady growth, REGUA has established itself as one of the most influential and active conservation organisations in south-east Brazil, and is now ready to build on its successes by embarking on a major new land purchase initiative. Land prices are starting to increase significantly, partly fuelled by the investment in roads and infrastructure flowing from the World Cup and Olympics to be held in Rio, but also from an increasing desire for city dwellers to build holiday homes. These uncontrolled developments are threatening to further fragment the forest unless we can purchase the key areas quickly.
In February this year the Brazilian Atlantic Rainforest Trust (a UK registered charity that was created to support REGUA) held its first major fundraising evening at the Jockey Club in Carlton Terrace, London. The event was attended by about 40 people, some representing other charities but mostly individuals with an interest in our work. Nicholas Locke gave an informative presentation on the successes to date and our ambitious plans for the future.
REGUA has identified eleven properties covering 1,500 acres for purchase at a total cost of about £400,000 and the fundraising event in London has already secured pledges of £150,000 towards that target. In addition, the Rainforest Trust (the re-named World Land Trust US) has pledged a further £40,000 and is actively working to double this contribution. Meanwhile Nicholas at REGUA is working hard to map the land that we wish to acquire and to negotiate favourable prices with the landowners.
Although we have made a great start, there is still a massive fundraising task ahead of us if we are to reach our target. If you can help in any way please contact Alan Martin in the UK, or Paul Salaman of the Rainforest Trust in the US.