Nature Seychelles has launched a new guidebook to the wildlife of Seychelles written thanks to international collaboration between environmentalists, donor organisations and a major international publisher.
The Guide to the Wildlife of Seychelles was written by Dr Mike Hill and Dr Dave Currie, who worked for Nature Seychelles as island biodiversity expert and ornithologist in 2000 on a wide range of scientific projects; projects which have now been translated into a useful reference guide to Seychelles’ fauna and flora.
Production of the guide has been financed by the Global Environment Facility/World Bank project “Improving management of NGO and privately owned nature reserves and high biodiversity islands in Seychelles,” a project awarded to Nature Seychelles’ run Cousin and the neighbouring private island Cousine.
The international funding allowed the authors to approach international publishers and, in 2006 HarperCollins decided to publish the 250 page full-colour wildlife guidebook.
The launch of the new guide book – held at the Nature Seychelles Environment and Education Centre – was attended by Seychelles’ Vice President Joseph Belmont, the Minister for Environment and Education, Ronny Jumeau, national media and local school students.
Speaking at the launch Minister Jumeau described the guide as “a fascinating read” and an “invaluable companion.”
He went on to congratulate all of those who had been involved in its inception and production and expressed his satisfaction that it had been produced through the efforts of a multi-sectoral, multi-national partnership.
Nature Seychelles’ CEO Nirmal Shah also highlighted the importance of the partnership between organisations in producing the guidebook.
“This is the first time an international publisher of the size of HarperCollins has been involved in the production of such a book. It is a landmark achievement that such a high quality guide to the wildlife of Seychelles is now easily available to school students, the general public and tourist visitors to our islands,” he said.
Copies of the guide will be on sale in Seychelles’ book shops and tourist boutiques, with the money raised through sales funding the work of the Island Conservation Centre on Praslin.
More importantly for Seychelles’ environmental future, copies of the guide will be donated to schools and libraries, helping to spread the conservation message throughout the country.