Image credit: Reto Kuster

Combating Urgent Threats to Endangered African Forest Elephants and Okapi in the Ituri Forest

2014 - 2016
Democratic Republic of the Congo
Species protected
Okapi Okapia johnstoni
African Savana Elephant Loxodonta africana

Project objectives

  • Elephant poaching pressure in Ituri demonstrably reduced with patrols covering at least 75% of the OFR;
  • Judicial systems for prosecuting key figures involved in poaching elephants and trafficking ivory in Ituri are demonstrably strengthened;



  • Threats to okapi from hunting for bushmeat and snares are demonstrably reduced;
  • Number of okapi hunting incidents reduced by 95%;
  • At least 50 rangers/wildlife officers trained and 150 equipped to combat poaching and illegal trade in ivory;
  • Operational SMART database with at least 2 ICCN staff trained in SMART technical/management application and 24 rangers trained in data collection;
  • Increased support for elephant and okapi conservation and management among key stakeholders in the landscape;
  • Park warden living quarters partially rebuilt;
  • Establishment of centralized okapi/elephant database (SMART);
  • Western limits of OFR identified, mapped and demarcated, and endorsed by local authorities and communities;
  • Four corridors connecting elephant and okapi habitat delineated and protected;
  • Stakeholders (policymakers, government officials, community representatives, civil society) are aware of – and committed to improving – the poaching crisis in the OFR and across the landscape;
  • 75% of the villages in the areas surrounding the OFR are aware of, and supportive of, elephant and okapi conservation.

This project is implemented by Wildlife Conservation Society.