Alley of Baobabs!

 

Madagascar is unlike any place else on Earth. It has been separated from other land masses for almost a hundred million years. As a result, evolution there has proceeded along a separate track from any other region. The vast majority of plants and animals you will find in Madagascar are unlike anything you may have seen before. In western Madagascar, the Alley of Baobabs is one of those unique landscapes. The Alley is a major regional tourism draw. While tourists spend thousands of dollars on plane tickets, hotels and tours to get there, the people on whose land this marvel exists get nothing. In order to survive, local communities are raising water levels to expand rice paddies that increase the stress on the baobabs. Funded by USAID, Conservation International and the Malagasy NGO Fanamby are working to reverse this situation. They are developing a project to improve the competitiveness among small businesses involved in the tourism supply chain. This video invites you to learn more about the ecotourism project and to cooperate with the conservation efforts to save this natural treasure.

Baobab tree in a rice paddy in Madagascar. Photo by Rhett A. Butler

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