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Published on Jan 21, 2014
Lukuru Foundation, Democratic Republic of Congo www.lukuru.org
Although the camera traps were all placed within old-growth rainforest, this video provides indisputable confirmation of savanna-typical species like Spotted Hyena / hyaena (Crocuta crocuta) occurring outside their currently known range as illustrated by IUCN (see link below). Spotted Hyaenas occupy habitats including semi-desert, savanna and open woodland, dense dry woodland, and even montane habitats, such as in the Aberdares, Mt Kenya, and the Ethiopian Highlands, up to 4,100 m altitude but are absent from, or present at very low densities in tropical rainforests. Our camera trap footage has provided evidence of the spotted hyaena in forest of the Bili Project - the Bili-Uéré landscape, thus extending their known range.
This camera trap footage was a result of a joint 1 year project by the Panafrican Research and Monitoring Program at the Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Anthropology, The US Fish and Wildlife Service, and The Lukuru Foundation, with additional funding provided by The Lucie Burgers Foundation for Comparative Behavior Research, Arnhem, The Netherlands, The Institute for Biodiversity and Ecosystem Dynamics at the University of Amsterdam, and The African Wildlife Foundation. Cleve Hicks led the survey mission and Karsten Dierks served as Panafrican Team Leader in charge of the camera trap project. They were accompanied by a team of six guards from L'Institut Congolais pour la Conservation de la Nature.