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Ayyalur Forest, Tamil Nadu, India - October 2018 

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Halfway through the project financed by the Maisons du Monde Foundation between 2017 and 2019, the results are convincing.

Thanks to the support of Man and Nature, its local partner SEEDS brings an innovative answer to the main causes of the Loris extinction, by integrating environmental promotion with socio economic development. The three main urging threats to Loris that are addressed through the project are poaching, pesticides that kills the insects that they eat, and the degradation of their forest habitat.

A year and a half into the project, the local population already see their incomes improve. 39 producer groups, of which 15 women groups, have been organized and trained in pesticide-free horticulture and value addition of forest products (Bamboo basket making, broom making and bee keeping). Producers have then been provided with hives and equipment for collecting and drying forest products thanks to a partnership with the local agricultural administration. The beneficiaries testify:

“I stopped all types of pest control sprays in my brinjal [eggplant field], due to the understanding that I cause more harm to the environment than the benefits received. At the end, I was surprised that the crop was as good as sprayed plots nearby. Neighbours are now seeking my advice to replicate the same. I am happier” (Mr.P. Kanagaraj, Village Panchanthangi Pudur)

“My income from honey has given me a new life, because I no longer need to walk long distances to collect the same from the forest. The income was useful to me for getting new cloths to my children. Also, now we get honey for eating, which was a luxury earlier and we used to sell everything collected” (Mrs.S. Poonkodi, Village Malaipatty)

Beneficiaries have seen their production cost drop by 20% thanks to the elimination of pesticides, and women have gained an average extra € 24 monthly with beekeeping, a figure that is expected to increase during the monsoon.

Soon, the groups will be able to receive microcredits and organize their marketing and sales collectively. As their incomes increase, the populations are sensitized to the protection of the Slender Loris and the first echoes of reduction in poaching are now coming from the field, while studies are underway to confirm it.




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