On 1 February 2012, the State Party submitted a concise report on the state of conservation of the property, which provides information on the implementation of some of the corrective measures, and also responds to some other issues raised by the Committee at its 35th Session (UNESCO, 2011). The World Heritage Centre and IUCN recall that three of the seven corrective measures adopted by the Committee were to be implemented before July 2011, two others are to be addressed before July 2012, and the remaining two before July 2013. Regarding the five corrective measures that were to be accomplished before the 35th and 36th Sessions of the Committee, the following is reported:
a) Strengthen and establish the anti-poaching mechanism
The State Party notes that the surveillance squads and the new anti-poaching mechanism that has been in place since December 2010 are being maintained thanks to funding provided by the Rapid Response Facility (RRF). It continues to operate with three mobile teams of eight officers each, which are deployed for ten days per month in high pressure areas. In addition, regular complementary patrols are carried out, based on the data gathered by the mobile units. The State Party notes that these patrols resulted in the confiscation of numerous arms and amunitions and the arrest of several offenders but provides no details if it has been able to significantly curb poaching.
The State Party also reports that a consultation workshop was held with stakeholders from the tourism sector from Tambacounda and Kédougou, with, among others, the objective to establish partnerships between tourism operators and park managers and provide alternative sources of income for ex-poachers.
b) Increase the staff of the property and provide, as soon as possible, training for them focusing on the protection of the proterty, its integrated management, security regulations, and provide them with equipment essential to their mission
The State Party reports that the 35 agents which were recruited in December 2010 have received training to improve their abilities in the field of anti-poaching, wildlife management and participatory approach methods at the periphery of the park. The State Party notes that a recruitment process for 25 additional agents started in February 2012. The State Party reports that, with support from RRF, 11 of 12 vehicles have been put back into service, and five GPS units have been acquired. The State Party also reiterates that a one billion CFA francs (1.5 million euros) Emergency Rehabilitation Plan for the property foresees the development of network trails, the rehabilitation, construction and equipping of guard posts, strengthening the surveillance of the park, and improving staff working conditions. Some equipment has already been delivered, and the remaining activities of the emergency plan will be implemented throughout 2012. Furthermore, the State Party reports that an IUCN mission, which was carried out in March 2011 with the objective to lead to the development of a new Management Plan for the property, has resulted, among other points, in the preparation of a management framework focused on emergency actions, which is now operational and has been budgeted for two years. In addition, a vision and objectives for a ten year Management Plan have been set.
c) Propose and implement real alternatives to the drilling of boreholes outside the park in order to reduce the straying of cattle in the overall context of seasonal migration in Senegal
The State Party reports that, with the support of the project “Livestock farming as a means of subsistence: strengthening the strategies for adaptation to climate change through improved management of the livestock-wildlife-environment interface”, further meetings were organised with local communities of Diénoudiala, Oubadji, Médina Gounass and Lingkéring. The objective of these meetings was to resolve in a participatory way the pressures on the property by improving the conservation of natural resources and animal husbandry practices in its periphery, but no results of the meetings have been detailed in the report.
Furthermore, the State Party notes that, with support from IUCN, a network of the fifteen Presidents of the different Rural Councils bordering the property is being created, with the objective to provide a basis for consultation which should lead to partnerships between the Parc and local communities for better management of the values of the property.
Finally, the State Party notes that a Steering Committee for the property is being created, which will provide advice on the matter of biodiversity conservation in the property and its surroundings.
The report provides no information on whether issues linked to grazing pressure in and around the property have been addressed through these activties, in particular the issue of the drilling of wells in the periphery of the property, which risk concentrating livestock around the Park and increasing pressure on the pastures and the Park.
d) Update the park's ecological monitoring program based on indicators that are simple, reliable and inexpensive to measure, and on statistics from reliable censuses of populations of threatened species (lions, giant eland, elephants, chimpanzees, wild dogs,...) and key species, and integrate it into the property Management Plan
The State Party does not report on progress achieved in the implementation of this corrective measure, however it does note that from 24-27 January 2012, a census of the key species of the property was carried out, covering the South-eastern area of the property between Niokolo-Bangharé-Mako. The report does not provide sufficient details on the methodology of the census, nor on the area covered and shows only the frequency of encounter with species along the transect. The frequencies of encounter indicate that all species occur at very low densities, with higher encounter rates for Roan Antelope, Buffalo and Giant Eland, very low rates for Elephant (1 sign along 350 km of transect), Hartebeest, Chimpanzee, Lion, and Leopard. Wild Dog was not recorded at all during the census, however the report notes that further observations made during 2011 indicate that it is still present in the property.
e) Improve boundary marking of the property and ensure better communication on this subject through signage adapted to the specificities of each communinity in the vicinity of the property
The State Party notes that there has as of yet been no progress in the implementation of this corrective measure. However, it states that a project for the densification of boundary markers was submitted to the African World Heritage Fund in March 2011, with no follow up to date.
f) Other conservation issues – basalt quarry, Sambangalou dam
The State Party states that the basalt quarry inside the property at Mansadala has been closed since October 2011, and that the area is currently being rehabilitated. The State Party does not provide any information on the proposed dam at Sambangalou, as requested by the Committee at its 34th (Brasilia, 2010) and 35th (UNESCO, 2011) Sessions.
Desired state of conservation for the removal of the property from the List of World Heritage in Danger (DSOCR)
The State Party report provides no information on progress towards reaching the DSOCR, which was established by the 2010 mission.