Establishment of a Wildlife Protection Project
You are a nature lover, interested in nature, a biology student or perhaps already a biologist. You have always dreamed of roaming through forests, meadows and rice fields to explore life in some exotic part of the world.
You are cautious, but considerate and courageous. You are able to organize yourself and your work in an independent way and would like to help us to preserve for posterity the very abundant and endangered natural resources here, which are threatened by deforestation, environmental pollution, and most of all, lack of awareness among the local residents.
A prerequisite is that you are interested in nature photography. Your task is to go ‘hunting’ with your camera using macro and zoom to capture images flora and fauna for later species identification, cataloguing and publication.
To establish a long-term research collection, we plan to inventory and document the local flora and fauna. The collection will consist of images and found specimens for which a suitable site will have to be created, hopefully at surrounding schools.
A vehicle is available. The surrounding area within a radius of 10 square kilometres must be systematically explored. Stones and rotten wood must be turned around, you will wade through rice fields and climb trees. Watch out for snakes, scorpions and centipedes! Sometimes you will work at night to track down and observe amphibians, insects and other animals
Stones and rotten wood must be turned around, you will wait through rice fields and probably climb trees as well. And sometimes it will also be necessary to keep an eye out at night to track down and observe various amphibians, insects and other animals, this includes, for example, setting up insect traps.
The impact of your work
You can help the local residents with your work. In particular, you can help the children in our villages to develop an awareness of the economic, environmental and spiritual value of their surroundings. In the long run, you will trigger the creation of protected areas for the local flora and fauna in the future.
The schools are involved
You're not alone in your work. The children in the schools we work with will help you with this task. The children know their environment very well. They will be active themselves and part of the project. For example, you can show online pictures of animals and plants you are looking for. The children will remember and help to track them down and show you where they have seen them, even if they don't know their names.
This way you can share language at the same time you teach biology and related science. Sciences lessons like we know in the Western world do not exist at most schools here. The children take nature for granted without any respect and caution.
Before it is too late, we want to make visible the treasures in the surrounding forests and fields of Ban Lao. At the moment, there is no awareness for the protection of wildlife in the local community. A first step is to take stock of the local flora and fauna. Over time, awareness will grow and we can create a system in cooperation with communities to increase responsibility among the local residents to rescue endangered animals. Often endangered species get caught in fishing nets and are left to die. A wildlife sanctuary could receive, identify and possibly provide treatment and care for endangered wildlife. The surrounding schools could be involved.
As a volunteer, you should have experience with web publishing since the whole project will be published internationally online and can help generate attention for the project.
You will get support for identification of the species from our partner STEMSEL in Australia, which has developed a procedure to verify and classify found specimens by searching the whole internet for similar images and information. If search results do not lead to a result, you may be fortunate to have found a species that has not yet been catalogued. This would be a very exciting reason for further research!