White Lipped Peccaries
To guarantee gene flow between WLP populations in the Pantanal and surrounding highlands, and to prevent further deforestation, WCS-Brazil/Pantanal works with landowners to promote sustainable ranch management practices that are profitable alternatives to deforestation and habitat conversion.
Our project: Conserving Wildlife and Rural Livelihoods Using Sustainable Land-use Tools – Brazil’s Pantanal/Cerrado promotes best management practices that combine financial and environmental sustainability.
The project is enhanced by a community environmental education outreach partnership with the local girls Futsal team. Education efforts train local students to conduct environmental monitoring and to share information on the importance of biodiversity for rural livelihoods with their families and communities. This effort also includes sponsorship of a local women’s soccer team (who wear uniforms with a local artist’s rendering of a white-lipped peccary), who promote positive environmental messages at community events such as soccer games, which attract large audiences in the small rural towns of the target region. We have expanded the role of these local athletes and jointly develop educational materials for the local community.
They also assist project researchers with surveys of fruit, peccary presence/ absence, and maintenance of camera traps and data record keeping. This local participation is not only beneficial to the project and educational for the students, but also promotes positive attitudes towards conservation among community members through informal, “word-of-mouth” communication with local students and athletes. By educating community members, like the soccer players, we hope that kids will influence their parents and grandparents, and pass on a conservation ethic that will help maintain wildlife populations in the region.