Boé area

The Boé area in Guinea Bissau is one of the core areas for the chimpanzee in this part of Africa. The area measures some 3000 km2. It is cut off from the rest of the country by the Rio Corubal. To the South and East the Boé shares the international boundary with Guinea Conakry.

Its isolated position and the general lack of resources are impediments to development, but did also create favorable conditions for the conservation of natural and cultural values.

Biodiversity as major asset

The biodiversity of Boé is the region’s major asset: as a source of food security and ecologically sound income generation such as bee-keeping and traditional medicine, but also as an opportunity for the development of ecotourism as a new source of income.

Population growth

The local communities of the Boé sector have maintained their way of life, scraping a meagre living out of the narrow infertile valleys that intersect the laterite cap overlaying the region. Population growth and the arrival of immigrants have pushed the area towards the edges of what the land can sustainably support. It becomes sometimes difficult for the population to bridge the food gap before the new harvest can be brought in. The region’s rich biodiversity, with its relatively large chimpanzee population is under threat, because of the growing pressure of agricultural fields.

Bauxite mining

The ecosystems and biodiversity of the Boé region are threatened by plans for bauxite mining and the plan for a road through the heart of the area. This would lead to a further increase of the human population beyond carrying capacities and eventually deforestation and degradation of the environment. The large and important population of Chimpanzees would get seriously threatened by these developments.

Protected area

With the help of local biodiversity conservation organizations, Daridibo aims to make the Boé an officially protected area. For that there is an urgent need to find partners, which can help to fund projects in the field of biodiversity conservation and poverty alleviation.