October 2014 | Nature and Culture International’s Wildlife Trackers of Monte Mojino project has been awarded a $24,350 grant from the Disney Worldwide Conservation Fund to strengthen community awareness and protection of key species and habitats within NCI’s 14,579 acre Monte Mojino Reserve in the Sonora region of Mexico.
This community-based project will employ youth and their community to protect the highly biodiverse tropical deciduous forest and its endangered jaguar population. With the guidance of local researchers and rangers, youth will track jaguar populations and other wildlife as part of NCI’s local EcoClubs, which teach elementary school students about the unique biodiversity in their region and the importance of conservation. Camera traps will be used to document the presence of the elusive and iconic jaguar species within the reserve, which is also home to mountain lions, ocelots and other important predators. After one year of work, the EcoClub students will present their findings to the community at NCI’s Wildlife Festival.
In the words of our Program Coordinator, Lydia Lozano, “This fund will strengthen a key part of our conservation project in Mexico – our children. They are the ones who will make the Monte Mojino Reserve transcend the present generation. Without them, we will not be able to ensure the conservation of biodiversity for the long term.” A further component of the project will be to expand the reserve through the purchase of an additional 1,482 acres of endangered habitat.
The Disney Worldwide Conservation Fund (DWCF) focuses on protecting wildlife and connecting kids and families with nature. Since its founding in 1995, DWCF has provided more than $25 million to support conservation programs in 114 countries. Projects are selected to receive awards based on their efforts to study wildlife, protect habitats and develop community conservation and education programs in critical ecosystems. For more information on Disney Worldwide Conservation Fund, visit www.disney.com/conservation.