Saving Paradise

Saving Paradise

– Protecting Pacific Island Forests by Empowering Community Action

Year: 2013 – 2015
Project Background
The Pacific Islands region spreads over more than 38 million km2 of ocean. Within this vast body of water, dry land is in short supply, and represented by a sprinkling of immensely important forested islands.

Pacific wildlife is unique – 60% of plants, 70% of birds, 50% of reptiles, 73% of mammals, and 100% of amphibians are found nowhere else on the planet. Sadly, these species have some of the highest extinction rates in the world. Since humans arrived a staggering 2,000 birds have become extinct.

The vast majority of land in the Pacific is traditionally-owned. Local families, tribes and clans decide how their forests are managed in order to provide food, water and medicine essential for their daily needs. It is critical to work with local people to find ways to conserve biodiversity and provide for their immediate livelihood needs.

BirdLife in the Pacific have developed an award-winning approach which has resulted in landowning clans in Fiji declaring their own Community-Based Protected Areas whilst generating new sustainable incomes for themselves.

The vision of this project is to establish a network of Local Empowerment Programme Demonstration Sites across the Pacific, and to share lessons with similar groups across the BirdLife Global Partnership.

Project Goal
This project will establish a network of Local Empowerment Programme Demonstration Sites to conserve 53,275 ha globally important forest habitats in New Caledonia, French Polynesia, Palau, Cook Islands and Fiji.

List of the projects IUCN Red list animals

This project will work with local families, tribes and clans at the following forest IBAs to develop the capacity of local groups to protect, manage and monitor their forests:

New Caledonia: Entre les monts Nakada et Do IBA – 27,221 ha

  • Kagu [EN]
  • New Caledonian Parakeet [VU]
  • Horned Parakeet [VU]

French Polynesia: Maruapo, Papehue, Hopuetamai, Orofero valleys IBA – 1,262 ha

  • Tahiti Monarch [CR]
  • Tahiti Swiftlet [VU]
  • Polynesian Tree-snails Partula hyalina [VU]
  • Samoana attenuate [CR]

Palau: Ngeriungs, Kayangel IBA – 300 ha, Ngermalk part of the Rock Islands IBA – 22 ha, Peleliu IBA – 1,670 ha

  • Micronesian Megapode [EN]
  • Green Turtle [EN]
  • Hawksbill Turtle [CR]
  • Micronesian Megapode [EN]
  • Mariana Fruit Bat [EN]
  • Dugong [VU]
  • Micronesian Megapode [EN]
  • Green Turtle [EN]
  • Hawksbill Turtle [CR]

Cook Islands: Mangaia Island IBA – 5,200 ha

  •  Mangaian Kingfisher [VU]
  • Cook Islands Reed-warbler [NT]
  • Polynesian Tree-snail Partula hyalina [VU]

Fiji: Natewa Tunuloa IBA – 17,600 ha, Gau Highlands IBA – 5,200 ha

  • Shy Ground-dove [VU]
  • Black-throated Shrikebill [VU]
  • Fiji Petrel [CR]
  • Collared Petrel [VU]
  • Shy Ground-dove [VU]
  • Fiji Ground Frog [EN]
  • Fiji Banded Iguana [EN]

*IUCN Red ListTM Status : CR = Critically Endangered, EN = Endangered, VU = Vulnerable