DEVASTATING MOROCCAN WILDFIRE TEARS THROUGH WILD BARBARY MACAQUE HABITAT
In 2022, a wildfire tore through the Bouhachem Forest Reserve in northern Morocco, one of the few remaining refuges for wild Barbary macaques, leaving many wild Barbary macaque monkeys dead.
From July 25th to August 4th, the fire ravaged a large part of where the wild Barbary macaques reside. Over 1/4 of the Bouhachem Forest has been affected by the fire, over 19,768 acres. This is the equivalent of nearly the whole of Stoke-on-Trent being completely destroyed.
The estimated number of monkeys requiring assistance and rescue after the fire is approximately 1800 – 2000 monkeys who are now depleted in food resources. The fire also swept through villages, killing livestock and destroying homes and crops.
Bouhachem is one of the most important remaining habitats for Endangered Barbary macaques, many of whom were killed by the flames. The survivors will now struggle to survive the next few months as so many trees and plants have been destroyed, leaving them with few sources of food.
A rescue operation is now underway to rescue the surviving monkeys within the burnt forest. Food resources will be pledged to meet the monkey’s needs alongside the constant monitoring of the conservation status of the Barbary macaques.
The objective from now to December is to regenerate the natural environment and restore the thriving biodiversity that was once before.
An organisation who we work closely with, BMAC (Barbary macaque Awareness & Conservation), are raising funds to help villagers with emergency food parcels, support communities to recover from the loss of so much infrastructure, and step up the monitoring of the Barbary macaque groups.
Our parks in the UK, Germany and France have pledged important funds to support with the rescue operation on top of our ongoing support for BMAC, the Barbary macaque conservation charity.
If you would like to help, please donate what you can here: