Conservation Plans for Kenya...
Arid scrub at the Olorgesailie Prehistoric Site in the Rift Valley - one of the sites visited during the review of plant conservation facilities in Kenya.

Africa is under resourced for ex situ facilities supporting environmental education and the conservation of threatened wild plant species. In addition the existing protected area network does not sufficiently safeguard the wild plant diversity of many African countries. An integrated programme is required linking the protected areas, ex situ facilities and research organisations.

As part of an ODA-funded project with the National Museums of Kenya (NMK), a review of plant conservation facilities and conservation resources in Kenya has been completed. This recommends creating a national network of conservation organisations that will strengthen the operational capacity of existing facilities, promote new collaborative linkages, and assess national and regional needs. The network would produce a national conservation strategy and training programme. The review also emphasises the need to develop conservation facilities for the threatened coastal forests.

As part of the project, plans for the new NMK Botanical Garden were drafted by the landscape architect Carolin Gohler. It is proposed that the new garden will form part of a national network of plant conservation facilities and focus on promoting the diversity and value of the Kenyan flora.

... And St. Helena

As a contribution to the St Helena Sustainable Environment and Development Strategy, a plan for the conservation management of the island's endemic plants has been produced on behalf of the Government of St Helena, under assignment from ODA. The plan identifies 12 priority species for conservation management based on the results of field surveys undertaken with the Agriculture and Forestry Department. Nine of the species are 'Critically Endangered' (sensu IUCN) and three are 'Extinct in the Wild'. Eight other endemic species are recovering following the control of feral livestock populations. The landscape of St Helena is highly degraded and infested with invasive exotic species. The long-term survival of the island's endemic plants will be dependent on the management of eight core habitat fragments selected as protected areas. Work plans for the management of these areas and the 12 priority plant species have been submitted to the ODA.

Contact: Mike Maunder (0181-332 5583)

Email Mike Maunder

CITES Orchid Checklist

The CITES Orchid Checklist is an ongoing project to produce a standard reference to the names of the most commonly traded orchid taxa. Volume 1, just published, deals with the genera Cattleya, Cypripedium, Laelia, Paphiopedilum, Phalaenopsis, Phragmipedium, Pleione and Sophronitis and includes synonymy and distribution. Developed as an aid to the implementation of CITES (Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora), it is also a highly useful reference in its own right. ISBN 0 947643 87 7. 7.50.

Contact: Jacqui Roberts (0181-332 5724)

Email Jacqui Roberts

Joyce Stewart, the first Sainsbury Orchid Fellow, took up a new appointment as Director of Horticulture at the Royal Horticultural Society on 1 August 1995. Dr Alec Pridgeon is the new Sainsbury Orchid Fellow and he will work mainly on the Genera Orchidacearum project with Drs Phil Cribb and Mark Chase.

Saintpaulia Conservation

Saintpaulia ionantha

A conservation assessment of Kew's Saintpaulia collection has been undertaken with the Conservation & Propagation Unit of the NMK. A report reviews the wild and cultivated status of this highly threatened group and makes recommendations on its future conservation management. Kew cultivates 15 of the 20 currently recognised species.

Contact: Mike Maunder (0181-332 5583)

Email Mike Maunder

Study Centre

Sir David Attenborough opened the SEEBOARD Study Centre at Wakehurst Place on 8 June 1995. This is one of the finest facilities for environmental education in the country and will enable school children and older students to study conservation and related subjects.

Sponsored by SEEBOARD, the Cecil Pilkington Charitable Trust, the Eranda Foundation, the Notgrove Trust and West Sussex County Council.

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