Working with the Congo Basin Institute and Peter Houlihan, the FieldKit team is deploying a series of stations in the Dja Faunal Reserve, one of the largest and best-protected rainforests in Africa. The stations, along with a tree-mounted LoRa radio system, will allow researchers to better study the reserve’s unique ecosystem, and will provide much needed infrastructures for Cameroonian scientists and for local communities.
The Congo Basin Institute’s clearest and most urgent goal is to create research infrastructure in Southern Cameroon. In the short term, these technologies will work to attract outside researchers working on conservation, biodiversity, health, and other environmental projects. In the long term, it will support Cameroonian scientists to train with cutting edge technologies, and to plan and lead their own projects in the reserve. Another fundamental objective is to engage the local indigenous community – the Baka People – with the work being done in the reserve. Local knowledge is critical to the success of the Dja project, and during our next visit to the reserve, we’ll be training Baka guides to use the FieldKit stations, and exploring meaningful ways to give people ownership over the project’s long-term future.
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