In the remote northern limestone formations of Vietnam’s Ha Giang Province, a small area of forest called Khau Ca is home to the largest population of Tonkin Snub-nosed Monkeys in the world, ~150 individuals.
This 1,000 hectare area is dominated by lower montane evergreen limestone forest, and is one of the most pristine and intact examples of this rare forest type remaining in Vietnam. Along with the Tonkin Snub-nosed Monkey, researchers have reported the presence of 67 mammal species of 22 families and 9 orders. The area has high conservation significance, with 16 species listed in the Vietnam Red Data Book and 8 species listed on the IUCN Red List at CR, EN and VU categories. 29 plant species in Khau Ca are recognized as nationally or globally rare and threatened. Protecting Khau Ca is the best method of ensuring the long-term survival of the Tonkin Snub-nosed Monkey and countless other rare species.
Since 2014, the New Nature Foundation has been partnering with the Denver Zoo in a new endeavor to increase fuel efficiency in the communes surrounding Khau Ca, thereby helping to safeguard this last refuge for the Tonkin Snub-nosed Monkey.
Similar to the Ugandan programs, fuel efficient stoves were introduced to three target areas after researching how fuel wood was currently being used.
Currently, three low-cost stoves designs made from a mixture of cement and rice husks are bring promoted. Stove Ambassadors assist community members, who supply the materials themselves.
With the success of the stove programs, we introduced an adaptation of the conservation competitions, called Monkey Days, in 2016.
(Top photo courtesy Luu Tuong Bach, right photo courtesy of Le Khac Quyet)