In July experts working in range countries of the Sunda pangolin descended on Wildlife Reserves Singapore to follow a structured workshop to come up with regional action plan.
It was the first time experts had gathered together in 4 years and there were definitely some familiar faces.
Creating an action plan can feel like a daunting task for a species classified as Critically Endangered on the IUCN Red List. The first step was to prioritise, identifying the biggest threats and what directly influences them.
From there is then became an easier to topic to tackle. Splitting into working groups depending on your area of experience participants were tasked with defining objectives and actions for their area. The idea being that these make actions clearer and form a set of steps that can be followed and adapted in the range country people are working.
As part of the working group defining actions and objectives on how to engage and work with local communities, we were particularly keen to not make specific recommendations as such, but produce a series of steps that could be followed to help people decided what actions would be appropriate to take in that area, with that community. This was an attempt to accommodate the wide variety in community attitudes across range countries.
The whole action plan should be completed by September outlining release and rehabilitation protocols; working with local communities; CITES and law enforcement; and demand reduction.