Madagascar
With its surface area of 590,000 km², Madagascar is a world biodiversity hotspot, made up of many different environments: rainforests, tropical dry forests, drylands… This great range of habitats explains the animal and plant diversity of the island, exhibiting high levels of endemism: 75% of the animal and plant species of Madagascar are found nowhere else.

Endangered species

Even if lemurs are emblematic figures of the Malagasy fauna, they are nevertheless threatened by the decline of the forest cover and the splitting up of their habitats. 90% of the primary forest has disappeared, and many species which completely depend on it, including lemurs, are now at risk.

LThe main factor of deforestation is forest fires: they are used to fertilize the soil (“slash-and-burn” agriculture) and to create new shoots of grass for the grazing of zebu herds.

Conservation actions

Concrete conservation actions have been taken to protect the Malagasy biodiversity. In this context, conservation and human development actions have been linked: if one wants to protect the environment, it is indeed essential to improve human well-being as well. The AEECL, Association Européenne pour l’Etude et la Conservation des Lémuriens (Lemur Research and Conservation European Association) is a consortium of many European zoological parks and universities. Its objective is to improve lemur conservation, by scientific research, breeding in zoological parks and the protection of natural habitats. This association works notably to protect blue-eyed black lemurs and to turn their living environment into a protected area.

The protection of the habitat of the blue-eyed black lemur, classified as “vulnerable” by the IUCN (International Union for Conservation of Nature), will benefit to all the other species sharing it. The Beauval Nature association is thus participating to those efforts to create a protected nature reserve.

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