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Bui National Park, Ghana Print E-mail

bui.gifAccording to many authoritative atlases and maps, Bui National Park is already underwater! But the dam first planned in the 1920s was not started until August 24th 2007. 

When Mampam Conservation were banned from working in Bui National Park, Ghana,  in 2001, it marked the end of independent biological reseach in the area. Now work has begun on a controversial hydroelectric dam that will destroy the riverine habitat of the park and, we believe, lead to the local extinction of many animal species including the hippopotamus.The destruction of Bui National Park has gone almost unremarked. This site aims to provide a record of Bui National Park  prior to its innundation




 

Bui National Park is a rarely visited national park in western Ghana that is famous for its large hippopotamus population, probably the densest remaining in West Africa. Thirty years ago it was due to be the site of a hydroelectric dam project that would flood most of the park. Although the lake that would have formed has appeared in maps and atlases ever since, the dam has not yet been built and the area still contains the most pristine riverine forest in the entire Volta system.

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The Black Volta Project started as a collaboration between a group of 40 students, fishermen and Wildlife Department staff to create some basic infrastructure and to document and study aspects of the wildlife of Bui National Park in western Ghana in 1997. In 2001 the project was banned from conducting research in Bui National Park on the grounds that our work was "not in the national interest".

 


Since then the project has worked with the people of Bator Akenyakrom village to establish some basic visitors' facilities at the gateway to the park.This work was suspended when it bacame clear that the village would be destroyed by the Hydroelectric Project

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Not many people visit Bui because it is remote and facilities are poor. But it is easy to get to (even on public transport) and provides a refreshing change from the Mole and Kakum type experience. This website contains details of the project's work in Ghana, some useful information on the fauna and flora of the area and the logistics of visiting the park and a unique list of things to do in Bui National Park, most of which have not been done for many decades!!! Click here for full report!

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About Mampam
Bye Bye Butaan

 butaan1.jpg

Butaan start to visit fruiting trees before they are large enough to swallow the fruits. They make repeat journeys to trees, perhaps to reinforce memory of the position of the tree. If the youngster survives it may continue to use this tree for many decades. Fruiting trees like this are a vital resource for entire populations of butaan. Learn more >


 
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The Butaan Project
Varanus bitatawa

Varanus bitatawa is the third species of  monitor lizard to be recognised by science that belongs to the "Pandan Biawak" group,  all of which are of at least as great a conservation concern as the Komodo dragon, but receive virtually none of the attention. Pandan Biawak occur only in lowland dipterocarp forest. The first species (Varanus olivaceus or Butaan) was discovered in 1845 and not seen alive by a scientist until the late 1970s. The next species (Varanus mabitang or Mabitang) was discovered in 2001 and in 2010 Varanus bitatawa (Butikaw or Bitatawa) was described. Other species of frugivorous monitor lizards may remain undescribed, but many may have  gone extinct without ever having been recognised.

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Read more...
 

 

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