Preserving habitat "Bandro". The 18 and 19 November, a festival in honor of this endemic lemur was organized at Andreba-Gare, in the rural commune of Ambatosoratra. The objective of the event is to educate citizens about the "bandro" and to publicize its values and its conservation because it can only live in a well-defined area surrounding Lake Alaotra.
The promoters, namely Madagascar Wildlife Conservation, Durrell DWCT and the Alarela Project under the technical supervision of the Regional Directorate of Environment and Forests as well as that of Tourism, have scheduled several activities. Among these socio-cultural events, a plantation of "zetra"- set of aquatic plant species including "zozoro" (one of the varieties of papyrus) with its long herbaceous leaves and the "vihy" was initiated to restore the habitat of this lemur. A screening of films focusing on the environment followed by a carnival also marked the two days, without forgetting various other festivities .
Le «bandro», "Hapalemur alaotrensis" is its scientific name, is an endemic species to the area of Lake Alaotra where it lives in the swampy ecosystem. He has a special diet made up of plant substances which he "sorts" himself from a papyrus, according to the needs dictated by his state of health, and reeds. The lemur lives in very precarious conditions because it is classified in the category of species "seriously threatened". Hunting and the extent of habitat deterioration caused mainly by marsh fires and other human pressures, are the main causes of his survival problem.
But the "bandro" is an asset for ecotourism. So, this festival which also reflected the desire to promote the sector, was marked by the installation of the first beacon which delimits the new protected area contained in, henceforth, l’Alaotra.
Finally, during the event, a partnership agreement was signed by the regional directorates of the ministries of national education and the environment in the area of environmental education.
Hery Fils Andrianandraina