EDGE Community

Project information

[Project name/title]
Creation of local saiga management associations in Uzbekistan

[Project description/overview]
This project targets ex-poachers to become monitors, tour guides and champions for saigas in their communities.

Ustyurt plateau, Uzbekistan

Project type:

Relevant EDGE species:
Saiga/mongolian Saiga (Saiga tatarica)

Project members:
Saiga Conservation Alliance

Relevant species
131. Saiga/mongolian Saiga (Saiga tatarica) CR

One of the world's fastest animals, the distinctive saiga can reach speeds of up to 80 km/h.

[Relevance description]
To establish local groups to monitor saiga populations in their area, and act as advocates for saiga conservation. These management associations are officially recognised and formally constituted. Ex-poachers are targeted to become monitors, tour guides and champions for saigas in their communities.
Project summary
Our previous project in conjunction with FFI identified Jaslyk and Karakalpakia villages as key locations for saiga conservation, as they are known to be important bases for professional saiga hunters in the region. In these two villages, we are establishing community monitoring teams who will act not only as monitors of the saiga population but also as anti-poaching patrols.

These groups are formed of ex-poachers, as they have the requisite knowledge of saiga to do the job, but also because these are the people whom we need to help if saiga conservation is to be successful. Poaching is driven by poverty, so by providing ex-poachers with a small income and also status within the community through monitoring, they are less likely to return to poaching again and also act as advocates for the cause.

Monitoring saiga with the participation of local people is a highly effective way of engaging them in conservation, as well as being a potentially cost-effective method of obtaining robust data all year-round.
1. To monitor the population of saiga on the Uzbekistan Ustyurt and to ascertain the scale and focus of saiga poaching;
2. Anti-poaching patrols formed of ex-poachers;
3. Raise public awareness and increase support from local communities for the plight of the saiga antelope;
4. Develop a better understanding of the public perception of saiga poaching;
5. Develop capacity of local rangers to undertake saiga monitoring.
Start date: 1st January 2007
Duration: 3 years
Project members

The SCA is a network of conservationists working together for saiga conservation.

[Member role description]
Project partners
Fauna and Flora International
Institute of Zoology, Academy of Sciences of Republic of Uzbekistan
Chatkal Biosphere nature reserve
British American Tobacco
[Title:] Saiga
[Image caption]
Saiga tatarica
[Title:] Organisation Logo
[Image caption]
Saiga Conservation Alliance
[Title:] Activities
[Image caption]
Saiga monitoring