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eBulletin - Conservation News from the World Land Trust World Land Trust - UK based conservation charity

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The World Land Trust eBulletin Issue 28, May 2005

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In this issue:
Ecuador Update: Endangered Frogs Discovered in WLT Reserve
Pickatrail.com Raises Over £5000 for Ecuador's Rainforest
Carbon Balanced: Launch of Website Helping Individuals
Payroll Giving in the UK – Help at Hand
News in Brief

Ecuador Update: Endangered Frogs Discovered in WLT Reserve 

Eleutherodactylus spinosus frog
Eleutherodactylus spinosus, another of the endangered frog species found at Tapichalaca. This is believed to be the first photo of E spinosus, which was previously known only from a museum specimen.

Tapichalaca reserve is home to several endangered frog species

A herpetological project (studying reptiles and amphibians) has recently been completed at three of the reserves owned by WLT partner the Jocotoco Foundation. The project, run by National Museum in Ecuador (MECN), recorded 18 frog species at the Tapichalaca reserve, of which nine species are considered Globally Threatened. Another five frogs of the Eleutherodactylus genus have not yet been assigned a species - so some of these may be new to science.

Three species are classified as Vulnerable, and five are classified Endangered, one of which, Cochranella cariticomata, is Critically Endangered and known only from one other specimen found further north in Ecuador. The new frog species Hyla tapichalaca, discovered in 2003, is only known from Tapichalaca. It has yet to be classified, but will most likely be Endangered.

Easy walking at Buenaventura

If you are planning on visiting our Ecuador reserves, you may be interested to know that the Buenaventura reserve has a new road suitable for walkers. What was formerly an abandoned main road has been now restored as a private road offering an 11km long easy access route suitable for those who find forest paths challenging, or would prefer not to have close encounters with snakes...

Read more about WLT's project in Ecuador

Make a donation to support Ecuador's endangered species

Pickatrail.com Raises Over £5000 for Ecuador's Rainforest

Nick Caunter handing over a cheque to John Burton
Nick Caunter of APH (right) presenting John Burton with a cheque for £5,465.83.

Travellers booking airport parking and hotels help save wildlife

Wildlife lovers are often faced with a dilemma. Do you travel far and wide to see exotic species? Or do you consider the carbon dioxide emissions associated with flying and stay at home?

Most of us do enjoy travelling occasionally, even if it makes us feel slightly guilty. To enable air travellers to make a contribution towards wildlife conservation, the WLT earlier this year partnered with travel website pickatrail.com. Pickatrail.com offers bookings on UK parking and hotels operated by APH – but takes no commission. Instead, all commissions are donated to WLT's tropical forest project in Ecuador, helping to protect tropical rainforest and wildlife.

The partnership was officially announced at the Rainforest Cafe, London, on May 25th, where Nick Caunter, Managing Director of APH presented the WLT with a cheque for almost £5500 – money raised from pickatrail.com bookings in just three months. This is enough to protect over 200 acres of endangered rainforest, the size of over 110 football pitches.

If you are travelling this summer, you can help save even more rainforest, with very little effort. Whether you are flying from the United Kingdom and need somewhere to park, or are travelling to the UK and need a hotel to spend your first night, just remember to book with pickatrail.com and you will automatically help protect Ecuador's diverse wildlife – at no extra cost.

See full list of airport parking and hotels you can book via pickatrail.com

Read press release about the Pickatrail.com launch

Carbon Balanced: Launch of Website Helping Individuals

A recent poll run on the WLT website showed that about 68%* of voters see climate change as a problem affecting us now, rather than a long term issue impacting on the next generations.

“I welcome WLT's new Carbon-balancing programme as a way of helping put back what we are taking away. I would urge everyone to think deeply about what is important in life and to consider the consequences of daily activities. Balancing your carbon emissions with the WLT means that we are able to put even more back in to our key objectives – acquiring land for conservation.”
Sir David Attenborough, BBC broadcaster and WLT Patron

Hot on the heals of the Business Carbon Balanced website, WLT's Personal Carbon Balanced was launched on May 25th. Personal Carbon Balanced is aimed at individuals and intends to demonstrate the value of rainforests in climate regulation. The Trust has calculated the amount of carbon dioxide produced by different activities, and used the latest scientific research coupled with studies in WLT's project areas to estimate the amounts of carbon absorbed by rainforests.

If you visited our old Carbon Balanced website in the past you will be in for a surprise. The updated site features a number of very detailed calculators, helping you to determine how much carbon dioxide emissions your various activities produce. There are tips on how to reduce emissions, and the option to make a donation towards WLT's carbon sequestration projects to 'offset' any emissions you are unable to prevent, supporting the conservation of threatened wildlife habitats in the process.

Carbon Balanced has been awarded the prestigious Website of the Week by Smart Communities Network and is supported by Sir David Attenborough.

Visit Personal Carbon Balanced

Read press release about Carbon Balanced being awarded 'Website of the week'

*After the first couple weeks of running this poll a technical glitch resulted in votes being reset and the final results are therefore based on an estimate. However, you can see the results from the final week on the WLT website.

Payroll Giving in the UK – Help at Hand

Does the company you work for run a Payroll Giving programme? If it does not, please read on

The Home Office has found that less than half of UK employers have set up a Payroll Giving programme. The figure is even lower for small and medium sized enterprises. So the Government is offering one off grants of up to £500 to encourage businesses with less than 500 employees to participate. Furthermore, the government will match the donations of each employee for six months from the time of their first donation. As the donation is taken off the monthly wage packet before tax, this means a donation of £10 will only cost the standard rate employee £7.80 while the charity will receive a whopping £20.00.

So here's a big chance: If you work for a company with less than 500 employees, persuade your employer to take up the government offer, and persuade your colleagues to donate to the World Land Trust. Fifty people donating £10 a month for six months would raise £6000. This is enough to buy a whole rainforest nature reserve – and it could even be named after the company.

For further information or help contact Gerald Watts at the WLT – we may be able to provide a presentation, leaflets, wall charts and other materials to encourage your employer not to miss out on this rare example of government generosity with no strings attached.

News in Brief

San Rafael Fire Update: Virgin Forests Unaffected

Forest fires seen from the air
This aeral photograph gives an indication of the number and extent of the San Rafael fires, which were centered in degraded zones of the forest.

The eBulletin recently featured an appeal from WLT partners Guyra in Paraguay, where several forest fires had broken out in San Rafael, the last Atlantic Rainforest remnant in the country.

According to Alberto Yanosky, Executive Director of Guyra, 12 fires raged the area for almost three weeks, affecting 3,292 hectares, of which 2,214 hectares were forests. The fires were centered in degraded and peripheral areas of the forest with virgin areas mostly unaffected: 2,012 ha of the forests impacted by the fires consisted of degraded or extremely degraded land.

Thank you for the support we received for this appeal on behalf of Guyra.

Patagonia Update: Ranch of Hopes Gains Land

WLT's Patagonian partners, Fundación Patagonia Natural, have erected a fence between the Ranch of Hopes Wildlife Refuge and the neighbouring ranch in the south. Because of the geography of the area, this means that Ranch of Hopes has effectively gained 200 hectares of land under their protection.

Read more about WLT's project in Patagonia

Schools fundraising for the World Land Trust

When a letter arrived from Phuket, Thailand the last thing we were expecting was a donation to the World Land Trust. But the pupils of Class 8Y had been studying rainforests in Geography and came to realise their importance and wanted to do something to help. They raised funds by offering a ‘Delivery Service’ taking orders for delivery of flowers, chocolates, letters and poems. Their fantastic service helped save two acres of Ecuadorian rainforest.

We also recently received a letter from 13-year-old Tori Ratcliffe, who organised a sponsored silence. Tori managed to stay absolutely silent for 12 hours, raising enough money to save almost five acres of threatened wildlife habitats.

Thank you to Class 8Y and Tori Ratcliffe for all your hard work - you have all earned your place in the prestigious WLT Fundraising Hall of Fame.

In the next eBulletin: India Special

In the June issue of the eBulletin we will focus on the Wild Lands Elephant Corridor project in India. Make sure you don't miss this special issue – keep some space in your email inbox!

The World Land Trust is a UK based conservation charity no.1001291 concerned with the protection of threatened habitats world wide.
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