Tanzania. I think you’ll be surprised to know why Tanzania is the answer. Here’s a hint: It’s not because of it’s wildlife reserves, game parks or national parks.
The Taï National Park in Ivory Coast was established by Law No. 80-35 on July 25, 1980 and has an area of 1300 square kilometers, making it just about half the size of Rhode Island.
The park has 3 species of monkeys (Cercopithecus mona A., Cercopithecus pogonias L., Cercopithecus erythrotis T.), 10 species of antelopes (Biomphalaria spp, Pelea capreolus, Ourebia ourebi, Cephalophus dorsalis, Cephalophus monticola, Syncerus caffer), 2 species of crocodiles (Crocodilus spp) and a great diversity of birds.
The park has a large variety of land mammals but only 7 varieties. The National Park spans along the coast from San Pedro in the east to Aniévréssec in the west.
Its 100 kilometers long and about 20 kilometers wide at its widest point with deep valleys opening up on either side creating a tropical climatic area as compared with areas north of Ivory Coast.
In fact it is sometimes called “Tropical Forests”. The park boasts nine rivers and many ponds and lakes which provide a habitat for a large number of plant and animal species.
The park boasts 300 types of plants, 450 birds and 150 amphibians. There are many mammals such as the pygmy hippopotamus (Hexaprotodon liberiensis), bushpig (Potomotrygon hylax), bongo (Tragelaphus euryceros), chimpanzee (Pan troglodytes) and lowland forest elephant (Loxodonta africana cyclotis).
The Taï National Park in Ivory Coast is one of the last refuges for chimpanzees which have been greatly reduced by encroachment and deforestation on their natural habitat.
A new study conducted by an international team of researchers working with the Wildlife Conservation Society of Senegal, have discovered that chimpanzees in the Taï National Park are genetically different from their peers in neighboring Guinea.
The study showed that about 10,000 years ago the great apes split into two populations across the Niger River, giving rise to today’s common chimpanzee population which is found on both sides of the border.
Chimpanzees are our closest living relatives sharing over 98% percent of our DNA, they are known to be one of man’s earliest ancestors and closely resemble humans in many ways such as having elongated arms for reaching objects and grasping them , thumbs similar to human digits which helps them grasp branches while climbing trees and a large brain relative to body size.
Chimpanzees use tools such as rocks and sticks to crack open nuts and leaves as sponges or pads to soak up water from a pool. They often use their hands and feet to eat, and sometimes employ tools such as rocks, branches, leaves and grass stems which help them to reduce the effort needed in feeding themselves.
The Taï National Park has great ecological importance as it is considered one of the largest continuous blocks of forest remaining in West Africa. It is rich in biodiversity with nearly 300 different types of trees, 550 birds species including some 80 percent of all African woodpecker species, 20 bat varieties several primates such as the pygmy chimpanzee (Pan paniscus), 25 amphibians and reptiles.
The park also provides shelter for an estimated five hundred species of butterflies and moths and around 200 types of fish species.
Today the park is home to many African refugees fleeing from political unrest in neighboring regions such as Liberia, Burkina Faso and northern Ivory Coast near the border with Mali. It is estimated that since 2006 about 30000 Sierra Leonean refugees have settled in the forest reserves along its northeastern edge.
These refugees were forced out by fighting between government forces and rebels who used Liberia’s unstable borders to their advantage smuggling diamonds and guns into Sierra Leone while trafficking drugs and weapons into Liberia.
The Taï National Park is classified as a tropical moist forest region that receives an average rainfall of 1500–3000 mm per year for more than ten months of the year. The region on both sides of the Niger River receives two high rainfall seasons per year, while low rainfall is received during the remaining months, these are separated by short periods of dry climate.
The forest region has a specific vegetation structure that contains pure stands of lowland riparian forest alternating with seasonally flooded swamp forests containing patches of evergreen forest.
The World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF) works closely with both local and international partners to ensure sustainable management planning of the park which includes the development of conservation techniques for park inhabitants through breeding programs, reforestation programs in surrounding villages, training for guards against poaching activities and various other outreach activities .
Conservation efforts have also included education campaigns teaching communities about the value of protecting ecosystems . These initiatives work together to help protect the biodiversity of ecology in Taï National Park, a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
In the region called Western Africa there are 4 African Biomes! The African Desert biome is the smallest biome and has only 1 animal what lives there! In this biome there is one type of creature that can be found living as well as doing something very important the dromedary camel!”The dromedary camel (Camelus dromedarius) or Arabian camel is a large even-toed ungulate with one hump on its back. It is native to the dry desert areas of West Asia, and North Africa.”
African Savanna Biome
The next biome would be an African Savanna Biome which contains more animals for example zebras, elephants lions and more! “Savannas are characterized by grasses kept short by grazers, often dominated by a single tree species, and with scattered individual trees that provide shade. Savanna cover a sizeable portion of the southern hemisphere mid-latitudes from 35°S to 35°N .”
“A monsoon is a seasonal prevailing wind which lasts for several months within tropical areas.” However, this biome only contains one animal the okapi!
The Okapi is most closely related to the giraffes but can be spotted running around in this amazing African biome. In these biomes, there are no trees or very little trees so if an animal wants to hide it would have to do so underground where they have caves!”Okapis live in forests and eat leaves, herbs, fruit, bark and grasses . They use their lips to grasp blades of grass. Okapis live in herds consisting of a dominant male with several females and their offspring.”
African Rainforest Biome
The next biome is an African Rainforest Biome! The “Rainforests are moist forests that occur in areas with high rainfall. The term “rainforests” was coined by George Stafford Raffles in 1817 as he traveled through Indonesia.”
Within this biomes lays the most variety of animals for example leopards , giraffes, buffalos , elephants and so much more! In this biome there are trees with thick trunks where animals have been spotted living within them . If you only look up occasionally you will be able to see beautiful colorful birds that fly through the sky! “The rainforest biome is located within 10 degrees north or south of the equator. This area has year-round rainfall with at least 60 inches falling each year.”
African Desert Biome
Finally it is time for an African Desert Biome ! Within this biome only contains one animal what makes me wonder why they are considered a biome, of course after looking further into it I found out why! The dromedary camel lives there so therefore it is recognized as a biome.
Even though there are not many animals living in thisAfrican Desert Biome , It does have some pretty cool features that make people who travel there want to stay longer!”The Sahara covers 9 million square kilometers, or roughly three and a half times the size of Texas. ” The Sahara contains many different types of terrain such as sand dunes , rocky plateaus, grasslands, oases and more .”