Comoé National Park

Côte d'Ivoire
Inscribed in
1983
Criteria
(ix)
(x)
Designation
IBA,
Biosphere reserve

One of the largest protected areas in West Africa, this park is characterized by its great plant diversity. Due to the presence of the Comoé river, it contains plants which are normally only found much farther south, such as shrub savannahs and patches of thick rainforest.
© UNESCO

Summary

2017 Conservation Outlook

Finalised on
09 Nov 2017
Significant concern
During the long period of socio-political crisis the site was practically abandoned which led to an intensification of illegal activities inside the site, such as poaching, cattle grazing and agriculture. The combination of these threats has had a severe impact on the already disturbed natural values of the site, especially on the populations of large mammals many of which have declined dramatically. The vegetation and diverse habitats of the property have suffered significant disturbance and fragmentation due to the illegal human activities, especially cattle grazing and agriculture, as well as bushfires.

The stabilization of the political situation has enabled resumption of some management and control activities with outstanding achievements. The overall state of the values of the sitehas much improved, but vigilance and sustained efforts are required to eliminate some major threats such as poaching. is still critical and might continue deteriorating as most of the threats have not yet been eliminated. The magnitude of human pressures makes it difficult to restore and conserve the critically declined populations of large mammal species.

The easy accessibility of the site and the proximity of local settlements pose a threat of infiltration of the site by local people. It is still possible to conserve the fauna of the site and to further facilitate its recovery by improving surveillance, establishing environmental education, improving law enforcement, monitoring and research programmes and raising awareness among local people. Indeed, most of the animal representatives of the Park are still present and relatively abundant at the exception of lions that have probably been exterminated from the Park.

Current state and trend of VALUES

High Concern
Trend
Improving
The long period of socio-political crisis in the country has had severe consequences for the state of the site. The habitats had suffered critical alteration and disturbance from illegal human activities, such as cattle grazing and agriculture, and associated bushfires. The aerial survey of 2010 showed a very low density of many large mammal species, including extremely low density of chimpanzee and elephants. The magnitude of human pressures makes it difficult to restore and conserve the already declined populations of large mammal species. The overall state of the values of the site is critical and might continue deteriorating as most of the threats have not yet been eliminated despite efforts to do so.
The results of the most recent aerial survey (April 2014) are not publicly available yet. But it seems that the major pressures like transhumance are under a better control, and populations of some species might have increased.

However, further aerial surveys conducted in 2014 and 2016 respectively suggest that most representative animal species of the park are still present and relatively abundant. The use of camera traps since 2015 confirmed the presence of elephants in the park and their number was further estimated to a minimum of 50 individuals during the dry season and 119 individuals during the rainy season. The number of chimpanzee living in the Park is estimated at 150 individuals, that of hippos at 113 individuals, and that of buffaloes at 1186 individuals. However, no lions have been observed for a long period.

The overall state of the values of the site can now be considered to be recovering well and further improvement should be possible as most of the threats have been eliminated or significantly reduced thanks to various efforts. Nevertheless, due to the current dynamic of recovery following significant disturbance, and the need for continued efforts to support this recovery, the site’s values are currently assessed as remaining of high concern.

Overall THREATS

High Threat
Illegal activities within the park increased during the socio-political crisis of 2002-2011. Poaching for large mammals, especially elephant, kob, buffalo, hartebeest, roan antelope, hippopotamus, as well as chimpanzees has already led to a critical decline of the populations of these species and continues to pose a threat to the values of the site. For major species this decline was estimated between 50 and 80% (or complete loss, such as for lions which probably became extinct before 2010 (Henschel et al. 2010). The western part of the site is affected by agricultural encroachment. Cattle grazing, concentrated in the northern and eastern parts of the park, has significantly degraded the site’s ecosystems. The licenses for mining research granted by the State party in the periphery of the Park could pose some threat if they were brought into operation. Stabilization of the political situation in the country has allowed restoration of the State authority over the site and has enabled initiation of corrective measures with significant positive results. However, poaching, transhumance and illegal crop fields are still present in the site (WCF, 2014). These threats are still at a relatively high level and the park needs continue to intensify measures to safeguard its natural values (WCF, 2014; GIZ, 2016).

Overall PROTECTION and MANAGEMENT

Effective
During the socio-political crisis in the country which started in 2002, the property has suffered a long period of almost complete absence of management. Activities such as monitoring, research and education programmes had been abandoned. The stabilization of the situation has enabled the re-establishment of a management system and control over the site and implementation of corrective measures thanks to international assistance and funding. In 2014, significant efforts have been done to restore a working management system; a new management plan was validated in 2015 and is being implemented. Despite the resumption of patrolling activities, some poaching is still taking place in the property, along with some cattle grazing. Financially the park highly depends on international support.

Full assessment

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Finalised on
09 Nov 2017

Description of values

Remarkable variety of habitats

Criterion
(ix)
Due to its geographical location, Comoé National Park is an ecological unit of particular importance. Its geomorphology comprises wide plains with deep ridges carved by the Comoé River and its tributaries (Bavé, Iringou, Kongo), allowing humid plant growth towards the north and favoring the presence of wildlife in the forest zone. The site also contains green rocky inselbergs in the north-south line, surmounted by rocky ridges that form in the centre and the north, isolated massifs and small chains of 500m to 600m in altitude (SoUV, 2010). Besides the Comoé River and its tributaries the park contains small rivers and streams as well as lakes and temporal ponds.

Transitional habitat from savannah to rain forest

Criterion
(ix)
Containing savannas, wooded savannas, gallery forests, fluvial forests and riparian grasslands, Comoé National Park provides an outstanding example of transitional habitats from forest to savanna. All types of savannah occur. The forest is composed of many leguminous trees. The gallery forests are dominated by Cynometra vogelii; the patches of dense dry forest by Isoberlinia doka , Anogeissus leiocarpus , Cola cordifolia , Antiaris africana , nationally threatened Chlorophora excels , and the edible 'akee'; and the flood plains by Hyparrhenia rufa (SoUV, 2010).

Important site for the conservation of Sudano-Guinean species

Criterion
(x)
The site contains 36 of the 38 species of the biome of the Sudo-Guinean savanna inventoried in the country as well as resident populations of species that have become rare in West Africa, such as the Jabiru Ephippiorhynchus senegalensis.

Variety of animal species

Criterion
(x)
A large number of species occur in the site, including mammal species with 14 species of primates (including anubis baboon, green monkey, diana monkey, mona monkey, lesser white-nosed monkey, white collared mangabey, black and white colobus and chimpanzee); 17 species of carnivores; giant pangolin, aardvark and rock hyrax; and 17 species of even-toed ungulates including bushpig, warthog, hippopotamus, bushbuck, buffalo, red-flanked duiker, waterbuck, kob, roan antelope and oribi. A set of 509 bird species have been recorded for the park. Four of the six West African stork species, and five of the six West African vulture species have been documented (SoUV, 2010). A total of 35 species of amphibians and 71 species of reptiles including one endemic snake species have been found in the park (ref. Internal Reports Comoé Research Station). During the surveys done since 2008, no signs of lions have been found anymore.

Habitat of rare and endangered animal species

Criterion
(x)
Due to the phytogeographical situation and the crossing of the River Comoé for over 230 kilometers, Comoé National Park teems with a vast variety of animal and plant species. Several of the bird species enjoy international protection, among which the Denham’s Bustard (Neotis denhami), the yellow casqued hornbill (Ceratogymna elata) and the brown-cheeked hornbill (Bycanistes cylindricus). As concerns reptiles, three species of crocodiles are found in the Park – including the dwarf crocodile (Osteolaemus tetraspis) – which are on the IUCN Red List. The property also contains three other threatened species which are the Western Chimpanzee (Pan troglodytes verus), and the Elephant (Loxodonta africana africana) (WHC/Unesco Mission Report, 2012, 36COM.7A).

Great plant diversity

Criterion
(x)
The park contains a remarkable variety of habitats and plant associations found, more often, further south, including savannah, patches of thick rainforest and riparian grasslands. The property contains around 1.200 plant species. Areas of specialized vegetation occur on the rocky inselbergs and in aquatic habitats (SoUV, 2010).

Assessment information

High Threat
Poaching for large mammals, such as elephant, kob, buffalo, roan antelope, hippopotamus, as well as chimpanzees has led to a critical decline in the populations of these species and continues to pose a threat to the values of the site. Agricultural encroachment, illegal grazing of cattle within the property and transhumance have led to a significant degradation of the ecosystem of the site. The period of civil war and the consequent absence of management have led to an intensification of all illegal activities. Nonetheless, the stabilization of the political situation in the country has allowed restoration of the State authority over the site and has enabled the initiation of corrective measures. This has resulted in highly significant decrease of illegal activities in the park (WCF, 2014; GIZ, 2016). However, poaching, transhumance and illegal crop fields are still present within the site and require continued vigilance.
Other
High Threat
Inside site
, Scattered(5-15%)
Commercial poaching by professional poachers and illegal subsistence hunting by local population constitute one of the main threats to the values of the site. Absence of management during the period of civil unrest has resulted in intensification of poaching which lead to a dramatic decline of the populations of large mammals (UNEP-WCMC, 2011). Some studies estimate the loss of kob and elephant populations at least at around 75-80%, while the populations of buffalo, red hartebeest, sable antelope, bushbuck, hippopotamus and sacred baboon have decreased by at least 40-50% (Lauginie, 2007). Illegal fishing in the Comoé river was also reported (WCF, 2010; UICN/UNESCO, 2017). The resumption of anti-poaching control activities and implementation of other corrective measures since the normalization of the political situation (SOC Report, 2014) have led to significant decrease of poaching level (SOC Report, 2015), but considering the resources and vigilance required to fight against it poaching is still considered as a high threat in the site.
Crops
Low Threat
Inside site
, Localised(<5%)
The long period of civil unrest and the consequent absence of control have led to intensification of agricultural encroachment within the site. According to the aerial survey undertaken in 2010 agricultural encroachment was widespread in the western part of the park (SOC, 2011). The SOC Reports of 2014 and 2015 state that there is almost no more agricultural encroachment in the Park, which was confirmed by a IUCN/UNESCO joint mission in early 2017.
Livestock Farming / Grazing
Low Threat
Inside site
, Localised(<5%)
Outside site
The long period of civil unrest and absence of control have opened the park to local and transhumant cattle herdsmen. The aerial survey of 2010 revealed that 90% of all mammals present within the property are domestic animals and that cattle’s grazing was responsible for a significant degradation of the site’s ecosystems (SOC, 2011). The number of domestic animals observed during the aerial survey of 2010 (more than 6000) decreased by 100 times in 2014 (about 60), while the number of wild animals observed increased by 1.39 times in the same period , Moving from 752 to 1047 individuals (WCF, 2014).
Further targeted action with the support of GIZ should be effective in achieving the goal of zero domestic animal in the Park.
Fire/ Fire Suppression
Low Threat
Inside site
, Extent of threat not known
Outside site
Bushfires reported within the site are often associated with illegal activities (poaching, illegal cattle-raising). The areas affected by the fires are found in different parts of the site, with heavy or medium degree of damage in some places, but they are concentrated within the central belt slightly shifted eastward which crosses the site from north to south (WCF, 2010; 2014).
Mining/ Quarrying
Data Deficient
Inside site
, Extent of threat not known
Gold washing practiced by local people during the rainy season constitutes a certain threat, but the information on its impact is insufficient (Centre de Recherche en Ecologie, 2002b). The IUCN/UNESCO joint mission of early 2017 concludes that a particular attention must be paid to that potentially growing threat.
Low Threat
No licenses for mining research were granted by the State party inside the Park but in its peripheral zone (SOC, 2014; 2015). Any mining operation in that zone would certainly pose a certain threat to the site.
Mining/ Quarrying
Low Threat
Inside site
, Extent of threat not known
There used to be a confusion about mining exploration licenses granted in the park in 2008. The State Party claims that this has never been the case as the Ivorian law clearly states that such licences cannot be granted in a national Park (State Party Report, 2016). According to the State Party, two mining exploration licences were granted indeed 15 and 80 Km respectively from the Park. The geological exploration allowed in these two zones would be aimed at evaluating their
respective potential mineral resources but any future exploitation would be subject to an environmental and social impact assessment (SOC 2014; 2015).
However, one may predict that the park will be impacted one way or another if any mining exploitation should be allowed at its periphery.
Droughts,
Temperature extremes
Data Deficient
Inside site
, Extent of threat not known
Outside site
Land-cover changes in tropical and subtropical Africa have led to accentuate droughts (Paeth et al. 2009). The decline in rainfall and increase in temperatures are likely to affect the hydrological regime and biodiversity of the site. Considering that 12 % of bird, amphibian, and mammal species in the Park are considered vulnerable to climate change (http://parcc.protectedplanet.net/9545), its extent and impact on the site need to be studied.
Illegal activities within the park increased during the socio-political crisis of 2002-2011. Poaching for large mammals, especially elephant, kob, buffalo, hartebeest, roan antelope, hippopotamus, as well as chimpanzees has already led to a critical decline of the populations of these species and continues to pose a threat to the values of the site. For major species this decline was estimated between 50 and 80% (or complete loss, such as for lions which probably became extinct before 2010 (Henschel et al. 2010). The western part of the site is affected by agricultural encroachment. Cattle grazing, concentrated in the northern and eastern parts of the park, has significantly degraded the site’s ecosystems. The licenses for mining research granted by the State party in the periphery of the Park could pose some threat if they were brought into operation. Stabilization of the political situation in the country has allowed restoration of the State authority over the site and has enabled initiation of corrective measures with significant positive results. However, poaching, transhumance and illegal crop fields are still present in the site (WCF, 2014). These threats are still at a relatively high level and the park needs continue to intensify measures to safeguard its natural values (WCF, 2014; GIZ, 2016).
Relationships with local people
Effective
Village Conservation and Development Associations (VCDA) were established for most of the 25 neighbouring villages surrounding the property. In 2013 the villagers were involved in approximately 20% of the surveillance patrols and their involvement in the management of the property was further strengthened in 2014 (SOC, 2014; 2016). Some meetingswith locals to deal with the illegal grazing activities have also been organized and community-based organization are at the frontline of awareness raising campaigns.
Legal framework
Effective
Designated as a national park in 1968 (Decree N 68-81), Comoé is located in the North-East of Côte d’Ivoire across5 administrated regions. The park is adminsitrated by the Ivorian Office of Parks and Reserves (OIPR) under the Ministry of Environment and Sustainable Development (SP report, 2012).
Enforcement
Data Deficient
Data Deficient
Integration into regional and national planning systems
Effective
Comoé national Park is integrated to the regional strategic action plan of Bounkani (Bouna). This document was validated in 2015. In addition, the park is integrated in the programme PAPE (Entente protected areas Program) of UEMOA/EU.
Management system
Highly Effective
A new management plan was elaborated for the period 2014-2015.
A surveillance strategy and emergency action plan to address poaching has been developed and implemented since 2012 and intensidied since 2014.
Management effectiveness
Effective
Due to the political crisis and civil unrest, the site has experienced a long period of absence of any management system. Since the end of the crisis, the situation has been improving. The normalization of the socio-political situation has enabled the resumption of the management activities throughout the site (SOC, 2012) The State Party report notes that the level of staffing has increased considerably and that a new surveillance strategy has been developed (State party Report, 2011).
In 2014, the political and security situation seems to have improved. In 2014, the PARC-CI project (Protected Area Management Project) has contributed to the improvement of management (SOC, 2014; 2015; IUCN/UNESCO mission report, 2017). Since 2014, the management activities of OIPR have become more regular and the management is undertaken in collaboration with local authorities. The Park was awarded the national Prize of the best Local Management Committee in 2016 (SOC, 2017).
Implementation of Committee decisions and recommendations
Effective
The application of corrective measures was supported by the implementation of two projects funded by GEF/ World Bank and by the Ivorian Government (State Party report, 2012) and later by GIZ and KfW (SOC 2014; 2015; IUCN/UNESCO mission report, 2017). Several actions were undertaken to evict cattle ranchers from the property and to fight against poaching, including intensified surveillance and awareness-raising campaigns. In 2017 the situation has improved. The local people are informed about the activities of OIPR and transhumance has significantly reduced. The new management plan of the Park was finalized and is being implemented. A biomonitoring programme is also being implemented with the support of GIZ including aerial surveys with an improved design.
Boundaries
Some Concern
Boundaries in some parts of the site used to be not clearly defined (mainly upon 8 km in the northern part where herding and transhumance pressure is higher and western part where poaching is higher). Corrective measures have been undertaken since 2014 with the support of UNESCO including materializing the boundaries of the Park and communicating with the neighbouring communities (SOC 2014; 2016).
The limits of the buffer zone are not defined, especially in the western part, which leads to debates with the local population (Unesco/IUCN Mission Report, 2006). The decree for the creation of Comoé National Park makes reference to a buffer zone but does not define it (Unesco/IUCN Mission Report, 2006). Nevertherless, the Decree on creation, management and funding of parks and reserves (2002-102 of 11 February 2002) defines the buffer zone. For the Park managers, it is not still clear what types of activities may be allowed in the buffer zone.
Sustainable finance
Effective
The application of corrective measures and establishment of a working management system highly depend on international assistance and funding. GEF and World Bank provided financial help of $2.54 million for the implementation of the PARC-CI project (Projet d’Appui à la Relance de la Conservation des parcs et reserves de Côte d’Ivoire). The Ivorian Government provided XOF 200 million for the resumption of patrolling activities (SP Report, 2012). The park has also received XOF 16.4 million from the Rapid Response Facility. Now thanks to a French debt relief fund, the Park receives XOF 300 million per year from the Foundation of Parcs and Reserves of Côte d’Ivoire for running activities. KfW provides Euros 15 million for biodiversity surveys in 2017-2020, and AFD provides XOF 500 million to support alternative activities at the periphery of the park (2015-2017) in addition to the PROFIAB programme of GIZ.
Staff training and development
Effective
In addition to the patrols and equipment for the agents, the 2013 mission noted training in anti-poaching for forestry commandos and elements of the Côte d’Ivoire Republican Forces, training on legal procedures for staff of the management body, training in ecological monitoring for auxiliary villagers, OIPR agents and SIG agents and ecological monitoring for the MIST data base (SOC, 2013). Training activities continue and are more systematized with the support of GIZ and include biological data analyses and various other modules for different categories of agents.
Sustainable use
Data Deficient
Data deficient
Education and interpretation programs
Effective
Since the normalization of the socio-political context in the country, an education programme has been implemented on a regular basis at the periphery of the Park in collaboration with different community-based organizations (Comités de surveillance villageois, Comités de suivi écologique, Comités d’informations, de sensibilisation, et d’éducation environnementale, Comités d’alphabétisation, Comités d’hygiène, santé, Comités des guides touristiques, Groupements et coopératives villageois). The programme was improved thanks to the recommendations of a study funded by AFD in 2015.
Tourism and visitation management
Effective
The civil unrest had led to a cessation of tourism in the area and as a consequence to a reduction of associated economic benefits. Since 2012, tourism activities were resumed and the number of tourists visiting the Park increases every year (204 visitors in 2015, 243 visitors in 2016, and 380 visitors by July 2017). Of note is that local tourists (mainly teachers and pupils) constitute the majority of tourists but the number of international tourists is growing too (65 by July 2017).
Monitoring
Effective
During the period of civil unrest monitoring activities have been abandoned which had led to a lack of knowledge on the current state of the natural values. Since then three surveys were conducted in 2010, 2014 and 2016, respectively (WWF, 2010; 2014; GIZ, 2016). In addition a specific elephant survey is conducted with the support of UNESCO.
Research
Effective
During the period of civil unrest the International Research Station of the University of Würzburg (Germany) has been destroyed and abandoned. There has been no research activity for the last 10 years (WCF, 2008; IUCN, 2008). Presently the station is restored thanks to German financial sources and research activities were resumed with several PhD and Msc student under the supervision of at least three senior scientists.
During the socio-political crisis in the country which started in 2002, the property has suffered a long period of almost complete absence of management. Activities such as monitoring, research and education programmes had been abandoned. The stabilization of the situation has enabled the re-establishment of a management system and control over the site and implementation of corrective measures thanks to international assistance and funding. In 2014, significant efforts have been done to restore a working management system; a new management plan was validated in 2015 and is being implemented. Despite the resumption of patrolling activities, some poaching is still taking place in the property, along with some cattle grazing. Financially the park highly depends on international support.
Assessment of the effectiveness of protection and management in addressing threats outside the site
Data Deficient
Information on this issue is insufficient, but one of the major threats seems to be related to the transhumant cattle
from Burkina Faso which potentially may lead to conflicts with local stock breeders and additional pressure on the national park.
World Heritage values

Remarkable variety of habitats

High Concern
Trend
Data Deficient
In 2010, illegal human activities inside the property, such as cattle grazing, agriculture, and associated with these activities bushfires have generated high perturbations in the functioning of ecosystems. Since 2014, there has been significant improvement in controlling illegal human activities, but the effects of this are still to be evaluated.

Transitional habitat from savannah to rain forest

High Concern
Trend
Data Deficient
In 2010, illegal human activities inside the property, such as cattle grazing, agriculture, and associated with these activities bushfires generated high perturbations in the functioning of ecosystems.
Since 2014, there has been a certain improvement in controlling illegal human activities, but the effects of this are still to be evaluated. Recent satellite images (2014) show that the landscape is still dominated by savannahs. The current distribution of the different types of habitats still needs to be compared with historical data that are hard to find.

Important site for the conservation of Sudano-Guinean species

Data Deficient
Trend
Data Deficient
Many species of Sudano-Guinean ecosystem are still present in the Comoé National Park. More information will be available once the results of the most recent survey have been evaluated.

Variety of animal species

High Concern
Trend
Improving
The density of large mammals has significantly declined since the late 1970s. Some studies estimate a decline of over 90% in the populations of duikers and kobs. The buffalo population has reduced by about 80%.
The results of the most recent aerial surveys (2014 and 2016) show increased numbers of observation of wildlife species s compared to the aerial survey to 2010.

Of note is that duikers, kobs and other antelopes are still relatively abundant and widely distributed in the Park. So is the case for baboons and patas monkeys. Also, as stated above, the Park also contains viable populations of elephants, chimpanzees, hippos, and buffaloes. Several carnivores were snapped by camera traps including leopards, and hyenas. However, no lions were confirmed so far in the park.

Habitat of rare and endangered animal species

High Concern
Trend
Improving
The populations of many endangered species have experienced dramatic decline since the end of 1970s. The aerial survey of 2010 detected only two individuals of chimpanzee. As for the elephants, no individuals were observed, though the report notes that traces of elephants were observed (WCF, 2010). No elephants were seen during the last aerial survey either (2014), but this might be attributed to the sample method. Indeed, the use of camera traps since 2015 confirmed the presence of elephants in the park and their number was further estimated to a minimum of 50 individuals during the dry season and 119 individuals during the rainy season. The presence of young elephants suggests that the population is thriving. According to recent surveys, the number of chimpanzee living in the Park is estimated at 150 individuals, that of hippos at 113 individuals, and that of buffaloes at 1186 individuals. Hence, generally speaking, the Park offers viable habitats for numbers of rare and charismatic animal species.

Great plant diversity

Low Concern
Trend
Improving
Vegetation of the property has suffered from illegal human activities, especially cattle grazing, agriculture, as well as bushfires (WCF, 2010). Since 2014 significant efforts have been undertaken to control illegal activities.
Assessment of the current state and trend of World Heritage values
High Concern
Trend
Improving
The long period of socio-political crisis in the country has had severe consequences for the state of the site. The habitats had suffered critical alteration and disturbance from illegal human activities, such as cattle grazing and agriculture, and associated bushfires. The aerial survey of 2010 showed a very low density of many large mammal species, including extremely low density of chimpanzee and elephants. The magnitude of human pressures makes it difficult to restore and conserve the already declined populations of large mammal species. The overall state of the values of the site is critical and might continue deteriorating as most of the threats have not yet been eliminated despite efforts to do so.
The results of the most recent aerial survey (April 2014) are not publicly available yet. But it seems that the major pressures like transhumance are under a better control, and populations of some species might have increased.

However, further aerial surveys conducted in 2014 and 2016 respectively suggest that most representative animal species of the park are still present and relatively abundant. The use of camera traps since 2015 confirmed the presence of elephants in the park and their number was further estimated to a minimum of 50 individuals during the dry season and 119 individuals during the rainy season. The number of chimpanzee living in the Park is estimated at 150 individuals, that of hippos at 113 individuals, and that of buffaloes at 1186 individuals. However, no lions have been observed for a long period.

The overall state of the values of the site can now be considered to be recovering well and further improvement should be possible as most of the threats have been eliminated or significantly reduced thanks to various efforts. Nevertheless, due to the current dynamic of recovery following significant disturbance, and the need for continued efforts to support this recovery, the site’s values are currently assessed as remaining of high concern.

Additional information

Importance for research
The site could be a good place for explaining the importance of these ecosystems, their conservation and their relations with local and national daily life
Access to drinking water
Water quality and quantity is one the main concern for local communities. The park is one of the main tool for the conservation of water resources only if all its natural values are maintained
Factors negatively affecting provision of this benefit
Habitat change
Impact level - Moderate
Trend - Continuing
Outdoor recreation and tourism
Tourism was slowly developing before the civil unrest. That complementary activity to the local economy was resumed after the long socio-political crisis and is likely to improve in the close future.
The main current benefits for local communities are found in the socio-economic development brought by the specific actions concerning the periphery of the park. The Comoé River is one of the 4 main rivers of the Côte d'Ivoire and the water for Abidjan: any change in the functioning of the ecosystems of the park will have effects on the quality and quantity of water at local and national scales. Tourism and training needs to be developed.
Organization/ individuals Project duration Brief description of Active Projects
1 OIPR, CRE Socio-economic study on poaching. The aim is to analyze that activity and find solutions for mitigating or stopping its impact on fauna.
2 UICN Espace Comoé –Côte d'Ivoire-Burkina Faso: Projet 3C Cogestion et Conservation des Corridors. The aim of that project is to determine solutions for connecting fauna of different protected areas of the region.
3 World Bank/GEF Projet d’Appui à la Relance de la Conservation des Parcs et Réserves PARC-CI. The aim of the project is to help Ivory Coast after a long civil unrest to restore the capacities of the protected areas.
4 Development of an interpretation plan The tourism to the park would be a complement to local economy but would need to define areas for observing and interpreting natural values.
Site need title Brief description of potential site needs Support needed for following years
1 N.A. Satellite monitoring/survey of the dynamics of habitats
2 N.A. Capacity building for bushfires management by OIPR and local communities
3 Development of an interpretation plan The tourism to the park would be a complement to local economy but would need to define areas for observing and interpreting natural values.
4 Community based projects Alternative livelihoods need to be supported in the area to provide sustainable resource use outside of the park.
5 Development of environmental education Programs aimed at adults and local children need to be developed to encourage conservation values in local communties

References

References
1 Bassett, J., Thomas, (2005), Card-carrying hunters, rural poverty, and wildlife decline in northern Côte d’Ivoire, The Geographical Journal , Vol. 171 , No. 1, pp. 71–82
2 Centre de Recherche en Ecologie, (2002a), Projet de sensibilisation pour la lutte contre le braconnage dans le Parc national de la Comoé, 11 p., Abidjan
3 Centre de Recherche en Ecologie, (2002b), Gestion participative pour la conservation et la gestion durable du Parc national de la Comoé, 58 p., Abidjan
4 Fischer, F. & Linsenmair, K.L. (2001) Decreases in ungulate population densities. Examples from the Comoé National Park, Ivory Coast. Biol. Conserv. 101: 131-135
5 GIZ (2016). Rapport du survol aérien de 2016
6 Henschel, P. ; Azani, D. ; Burton, C. ; Malanda, G. ; Saidu, M.S. & Hunter, L. (2010) Lion status update from five range countries in West and Central Africa. Cat News 52 :34-39
7 IUCN/UNESCO mission report, February 2017
8 Ministère de l'Environnement et du Cadre de Vie, (2001a), Plan d'Aménagement du Parc national de la Comoé et de développement de sa périphérie, 2001-2010, 108 p., Abidjan
9 Ministère de l'Environnement et du Cadre de Vie, (2001b), Plan d'Aménagement du Parc national de la Comoé et de développement de sa périphérie, 2001-2010, Annexes, 72 p., Abidjan
10 Paeth, H., Born, K., Girmes, R., Podzun, R., Jacob, D. (2009). Regional climate change in tropical and Northern Africa due to Greenhouse forcing and land use changes, J Clim., Vol. 22, pp. 114–132. doi: 10.1175/2008JCLI2390.1.
11 State of Conservation Report 2011
12 State of Conservation Report 2012
13 State of Conservation Report 2013
14 State of Conservation Report 2014
15 State of Conservation Report 2015
16 State of Conservation Report 2017
17 UICN, (2008), Parcs et Réserves de Côte d'Ivoire: évaluation de l'efficacité de la gestion des aires protégées, 43 p., Gland, Switzerland
18 UICN, (2011), Cogestion et Conservation des Corridors de l’Espace Comoé, 4 p., Ouagadougou, Burkina Faso
19 Unesco/UICN, 2006, Rapport de mission de suivi de l’état de la conservation du Parc National de la Comoé, 26 p.
20 WCF (2010). Etat des ressources naturelles du parc national de la comoe et de sa zone peripherique Rapport de l’inventaire faunique par survol aerien.
21 WCF (2014) Etat des ressources naturelles du parc national de la comoe et de sa zone peripherique Rapport de l’inventaire faunique par survol aerien
22 WCF, (2008), Evaluation rapide de l’état du Parc national de la Comoé: les grands mammifères et les activités illégales humaines, 38 p., Abidjan