AHEAD Update – September 2008

*I should again note that if you wish to be removed from this e-mail list please just let me know. My hope is to keep parties interested in Animal Health for the Environment And Development up-to-date on developments post-Durban World Parks Congress over time, but I certainly understand if anyone wants to opt out of receiving such messages. Updates are also posted (and archived) on the AHEAD website at http://www.wcs-ahead.org. Please note that URL hotlinks for many of the organizations mentioned below can be found at http://www.wcs-ahead.org/links.html.

If you would like to post an item in the next AHEAD Update, please just send it to me- thanks!

*Happy Birthday AHEAD!!! It was 5 years ago this month that AHEAD was launched at the IUCN World Parks Congress in Durban, South Africa. Thanks to all of you who have contributed to the ongoing evolution and growth of AHEAD from a pioneering interdisciplinary concept into an exciting cross-sectoral program!


*AHEAD Great Limpopo Transfrontier Conservation Area (TFCA) Seed Grant Winners Announced!!! In response to the Request for Proposals issued at the beginning of the year, twenty proposals were received, of which we were able to fund ten after a rigorous peer review process (thank you all reviewers!). $321,000 in Seed Grants (made possible by the generosity of The Rockefeller Foundation, The John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation, and the U.S. Agency for International Development - USAID being a new addition to the Seed Grants program!**) also leveraged an additional $202,000 from project partners- all totaling more than half a million dollars for important work in the Great Limpopo Transfrontier Conservation Area!  We look forward to hearing from all of the winners, who will be presenting what they've proposed at the next full AHEAD GLTFCA Working Group meeting, to be held in the tri-national region (Mozambique, South Africa, Zimbabwe) in early March (more "save the date" and other details on that meeting will be sent to Working Group members soon).

Please join me in congratulating all of the winners, as well as all proponents who submitted worthwhile proposals that were not able to be funded. The ten winning proposals are:

*Skills Development for Disease Monitoring in the Greater Limpopo Transfrontier Conservation Area (GLTFCA): Capacity Building for Wildlife Disease Diagnostics- Emily Lane, Antoinette Kotze, Rosa Costa, Mary Louise Penrith and team; National Zoological Gardens of South Africa and collaborating institutions

*Land Use Alternatives and Livelihood Viability in Ecosystems at Risk of Emergent Animal Diseases- Brian Child, Gregory Parent and Jessica Musengezi; University of Florida

*Balancing Ecotourism And Livestock Production- Implications For Livelihoods And The Environment- Cheryl McCrindle and Petronella Chaminuka; University of Pretoria and Wageningen University

*A Comparative Study of Institutional Arrangements for Small-Scale Livestock Farmers in Communities in the Great Limpopo Transfrontier Conservation Area- Jeanette Manjengwa and team; University of Zimbabwe Center for Applied Social Sciences

*Zoonosis at the Interface: Lion (Panthera leo) Bovine Tuberculosis Overview and Analysis Workshop- Yolan Friedman, Brenda Daly, Markus Hofmeyr and Peter Buss; Endangered Wildlife Trust and South African National Parks

*Alternative Sustainable Futures for Post-Resettlement in the Limpopo National Park, Mozambique- Ken Giller and Jessica Milgroom; Wageningen University

*Community Theatre as a Communications and Outreach Tool to Support Local-Level Scenario Planning Initiatives within the GLTFCA- Kule Chitepo, Webster Whande, Simon Anstey and team; Resource Africa

*Improvement of Village Poultry Health and Production by Communities in the Limpopo National Park Support Zone in Gaza Province, Mozambique- Robyn Alders and team; International Rural Poultry Centre, KYEEMA Foundation

*Exploring Future Ecosystem Services: A Scenario Planning Approach to Uncertainty in the South East Lowveld of Zimbabwe- Cees Leeuwis, Chaka Chirozva and team; Wageningen University

*Pathogens, Parks and People: The Role of Disease in TFCA Development- Elissa Cameron, Claire Geoghegan and team; University of Pretoria Mammal Research Institute

More details to follow in future AHEAD Updates!
**Note: The projects selected for AHEAD GLTFCA Seed Grants in no way reflect the views of The Rockefeller Foundation, The John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation, or the U.S. Agency for International Development- none of whom were involved in the selection of grantees.


*"Human, Animal, and Ecosystem Health"-  Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars, Environmental Change and Security Program, Washington, DC. Webcast available at http://www.wcs-ahead.org/webcasts.html.


*New primer available on southern African TFCAs from WCS & AHEAD- "As the Fences Come Down: Emerging Concerns in Transfrontier Conservation Areas"- this piece is a basic attempt at an attractive, easy read- one that hopefully opens some eyes without attempting to spell-out all of the deeper details of the work that needs to be done to make transfrontier conservation areas (TFCAs) successful.  AHEAD collaborating individuals and institutions (and anyone else!) are welcome to use this piece to help focus the attention of decision-makers as well as the educated lay public on a set of issues of core importance to AHEAD's goals. The PDF is now available for download at http://www.wcs-ahead.org.

*New chapter on transboundary conservation efforts in southern Africa and inherent challenges at the wildlife / livestock / human health interface- Osofsky, S. A., Cumming, D. H. M., and M. D. Kock. 2008. “Transboundary Management of Natural Resources and the Importance of a ‘One Health’ Approach: Perspectives on Southern Africa,” pp. 89-98, in Fearn, E. and K. H. Redford (eds.) State of the Wild 2008-2009: A Global Portrait of Wildlife, Wildlands, and Oceans. Island Press, Washington, D. C. See http://www.wcs-ahead.org/print.html.

*New book- Responsible Tourism: Critical Issues for Conservation and Development, edited by Dr. Anna Spenceley- Conservation efforts are often seen to be in conflict with local livelihoods and resource use - the 'park versus people' debate. 'Responsible tourism' or 'Eco-tourism' is often invoked as a third way that serves both ends. Yet does it actually work in practice? This volume delves deep into practice in southern Africa, the hotbed of innovation on the issue, and provides a comprehensive, evidence-based examination of what works and what fails. It opens with an overview of the issues, looks at what sustainable and responsible tourism are in practice and how they may contribute to conservation, poverty alleviation and local economic development. Part one examines policies and institutions as they relate to responsible tourism in terms of governments, donor agencies and NGOs. Part two considers wildlife tourism and ecotourism, looking at local economic development, supply and demand for responsible tourism, certification and fair trade, the economics of wildlife tourism, transfrontier conservation areas, ecological impacts of tourism and other issues. Part three looks at more detailed case studies of community-based tourism projects. The book concludes with a synthesis of the key findings with implications for policy, management and the business side of tourism. Published by Earthscan with the Southern Africa Sustainable Use Specialist Group (SASUSG) of IUCN: http://www.earthscan.co.uk/?tabid=26778

*New COMACO (Community Markets for Conservation) e-News subscriptions available (free!)- Sign-up at http://www.itswild.org/newsletter/subscribe. The Wildlife Conservation Society has made a long-term commitment to understanding the challenges of reconciling human needs and addressing conflicts around protected areas in Zambia's Luangwa Valley.  In just over five years and with support from the World Food Program, the Royal Norwegian Embassy, USAID and other partners, COMACO has demonstrated the important linkages between improved levels of food security and income for over 40,000 families, and the voluntary reduction in illegal hunting and snaring of wildlife.  WCS believes COMACO represents an important contribution to future strategies for conserving wildlife and wild places in many parts of Africa and has created a specific website, http://www.itswild.org, to share information about this program and its operations. COMACO and AHEAD are currently collaborating, for example, with the International Rural Poultry Center (IRPC) of the KYEEMA Foundation and Cornell University to improve village poultry health to contribute to food security while simultaneously diminishing demand for illegal game meat.

*New University of Wisconsin- Madison's The Nelson Institute Research Recommendations on Managing Human / Wildlife Conflict-  See http://www.nelson.wisc.edu/people/treves/Publications.htm

*New journal seeks submissions- Transboundary and Emerging Diseases brings together the latest research on infectious animal diseases considered to represent the greatest threats to animals worldwide. The journal provides a venue for global research on diagnosis, prevention and management, and for papers on veterinary public health, pathogenesis, epidemiology, statistical modeling, diagnostics, biosecurity issues, genomics, vaccine development and rapid communication of new outbreaks. This international journal will be of vital interest to scientists and practitioners working in the field of infectious diseases, including veterinarians, animal scientists, agricultural scientists, policy makers, wildlife workers, the public health community, and conservationists. For more information and online submission options, please see http://www.blackwellpublishing.com/journal.asp?ref=1865-1674&site=1.


*Envirovet Summer Institute is 7-week immersion-style summer course for veterinarians and veterinary students from around the world aimed at educating, informing, engaging and inspiring animal health professionals of all backgrounds and nationalities to become integral members of teams protecting animal, human and ecosystem health.  The course is led by Dr. Val Beasley, DVM, PhD (University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign) in close collaboration with the University of California, Davis Wildlife Health Center; key partners include White Oak Plantation and Conservation Center, St. Catherines Island Foundation, Harbor Branch Oceanographic Institute, and this year, Sokoine University of Agriculture (Tanzania) and Tanzania National Parks. This year's course was held from June 17 - August 6, 2008, and the class was comprised of 27 students from eight countries:  the United States (17); Canada (1); Sri Lanka (3); India (1); Uganda (1); Nigeria (1); Tanzania (2); and Mexico (1). Students gained knowledge and skills in a variety of subjects, including (but not limited to): biodiversity; climate change; terrestrial and aquatic ecosystem health; wildlife immobilization; endangered species reproduction; disease at the wildlife/livestock interface; grantsmanship; media training; zoonoses; epidemiology, population modeling; public health; ecological economics; and protected areas management. Having trained more than 400 veterinarians from more than 40 nations to date in the "One Health" approach, this almost 20-year-old program is entering a new phase in its development, transitioning to independent non-profit status and seeking new partners to ensure long-term sustainability of the program. Those interested in enrolling in the 2009 course or in partnering with the organization are encouraged to contact Dr. Val Beasley val@illinois.edu or Dr. Kirsten Gilardi kvgilardi@ucdavis.edu. To learn more about the program, please visit Envirovet's website: http://www.cvm.uiuc.edu/envirovet/index.html.

*Southern African Wildlife College offers “Infrastructure Management” (Oct. 27 – Nov.14)- learn to construct and maintain infrastructure usually associated with conserved areas; and “Resource Economics” (Oct. 19 – 31)- gain an understanding of basic economic principles and how they relate to wildlife and communities in their different conservation areas. Certain courses offered by the college comprise unit standards of South Africa's National Qualifications in Conservation as registered on the NQF. See http://www.wildlifecollege.org.za/, or contact Terry Harnwell tharnwell@sawc.org.za.

*Increasing Human Capacity for Global Human-Wildlife Coexistence, 'Pathways to Success' 2008 Conference- Estes Park, Colorado adjacent to Rocky Mountain National Park. Sunday, September 28, 2008 - Thursday, October 2, 2008. This conference includes the special training workshop, "Understanding and managing human-wildlife conflicts including participatory mapping of risk and vulnerability" on October 1st. Instructors: Adrian Treves, Assistant Professor, Nelson Institute for Environmental Studies and Lisa Naughton, Professor, Dept. of Geography, University of Wisconsin- Madison. The objective of this course is to provide participants with a framework for understanding situations in which wildlife pose a threat to crops, livestock, timber or human safety within a broad, cross-cultural and international perspective. The instructors will present a step-by-step approach to building co-management structures, using participatory methods. In particular, they will focus on participatory mapping to integrate local knowledge into technical planning steps. Point of contact: atreves@wisc.edu

*International EcoHealth Forum 2008: 2nd Biennial Conference of the International Association for Ecology & Health, December 2008- AHEAD collaborating institutions / individuals are encouraged to participate- see http://www.insp.mx/ecohealth2008/index.php for details.


*The Percy FitzPatrick Institute at the University of Cape Town currently has openings for postdoctoral researchers in ecology and conservation. Contact Prof. Phil Hockey phil.hockey@uct.ac.za for further information. More information about the Percy FitzPatrick Institute can be found at http://www.fitzpatrick.uct.ac.za/.

If you have items for the next AHEAD Update, please just let me know – thanks.

"What is AHEAD?" Animal Health for the Environment And Development was launched exactly five years ago- at the 2003 IUCN World Parks Congress in Durban, South Africa.  By assembling a ‘dream team’ of veterinarians, ecologists, biologists, social and economic scientists, agriculturists, wildlife managers, public health specialists and others from across East and southern Africa, the Wildlife Conservation Society, IUCN, and a range of partners tapped into some of the most innovative conservation and development thinking on the African continent- and AHEAD was born. Since then, a range of programs addressing conservation, health, and concomitant development challenges have been launched with the support of a growing list of implementing partners and donors who see the intrinsic value of what WCS has called the “One World, One Health” approach. 

All the best,