Belambo survey

The customary proprietors of Belambo forest gave permission earlier this year for the Bezà Mahafaly team to undertake a rapid assessment of biodiversity in the area, after extended discussions led by the President of the Beza Mahafaly COSAP. The monitoring team, accompanied by four students from the University of Toliary and local villagers, spent almost three weeks there in early March. The forest showed little evidence of human activity, and the team recorded many species of birds, including three members of the endemic family of vangas (Leptopterus chabert, Falcullea palliate, and Vanga curvirostris) and several species of Coua. They also found high densities of sifaka and maki (Propithecus verreauxi and Lemur catta). The plant species of Belambo are similar to those of the dry forest in the Reserve, but the relative abundance and dominance of species is different. The abundance of baobabs (Adansonia za) in Belambo is particularly notable.