The Northwest Region or North-West Region (Northwest Province until 2008; French: Région du Nord-Ouest) of Cameroon constitutes part of the territory of Southern Cameroons. The Northwest region is found in the western highlands of Cameroon. It lies between latitudes 5° 40’ and 7° to the North of the equator, and between longitudes 9°45 and 11°10’ to the East of the Meridian. It is bordered to the south-west by the South-West, to the south by West Region, to the east by Adamawa Region, and to the north by the Federal Republic of Nigeria. The North West region of Cameroon forms the heart of the Bamenda Highlands, an area known to support high levels of biological diversity and endemism. Human population densities here are amongst the highest in Cameroon, with approximately 100–250 people km-2. Consequently, the conversion of forest to pasture and agriculture has been dramatic and widespread, and the landscape has changed considerably over the last century, with just a few fragmented forests remaining that hold only remnants of their previous primate assemblages. Unsurprisingly, chimpanzee densities are extremely low, and their distribution is highly fragmented across a mosaic of montane and gallery forest and grassland savannah. There has been relatively little research on the chimpanzees in this region, and we have incomplete knowledge of their abundance or ecology.A number of forest reserves provide the best hope for P. t. ellioti conservation in the Bamenda Highlands, although hunting pressure and habitat loss still pose major threats even at those sites.
Besides its flagship species, the Pan troglodytes ellioti, it hosts other protected species like the Preuss’s monkey, Black and white colobus, Bannerman’s touraco and the Banded wattle-eye, making the protection of these forest reserve a global imperative.
North West Region, Cameroon Site Names
Kom-Wum Forest Reserve
Ako-Mbembe Forest Reserve
Fungom Forest Reserve*
Southern Menchum forest patches
CAEPA Cameroon has a dream of protecting these great apes from extinction with the collaboration of partners in carrying out activities like surveys to ascertain the exact number of chimpanzees in these forest reserves in the North West Region, conservation education for community awareness raising and involvement in protecting these chimpanzees in the wild as well as set up village vigilante committees as well as enhance anti poaching patrols. Livelihood improvement with alternative income generating activities will go a long way to reduce human pressure on the chimpanzee habitat.
CAEPA Cameroon activities in wildlife conservation in the North West Region is a contribution to the Regional Action Plan for the conservation of the Nigeria Cameroon Chimpanzee,the Pan Troglodyte Ellioti as well as the Action Plan for Primates Conservation in Africa ,Not to forget conservation strategies as laid down in the Status Survey and Conservation Action Plan for the West African Chimpanzee