25.05.2013 > Senegalese Association pour la Protection des Almadies Read more... ... >
15.05.2013 - 19.05.2013 > Climate change and the changes in the ecosystems of the Langue de Barbarie Read more... ... >
28.03.2013 > Radio talk with environmental experts Read more... ... >
16.05.2013 > Successful project fundraising Read more... ... >
05.05.2013 > COTOA first private sector partner to support the Ecoproject of the month Read more... ... >
01.05.2013 > Stop nylon fishing nets! Read more... ... >
Welcome to our Ecoblog! Here is the place where we exchange ideas or spotlight green events that have come to our attention. Your comments or articles are welcome!
News content [en]
Entrepeneur, lover of life and nature, Ecofund is pleased to introduce you to Augustin!
Alongside his association, APES, Augustin fights against environmental degradation in his region through the creation of an Ecopark which permits the preservation and conservation of a diversity of animal species and plants. Something that speaks to his heart: “These giant trees, especially the silk-cotton, are extraordinary but they disappear daily in Casamance. Some of my favorite animals, in particular the does and monkeys who have no large forest left to hide in from predators. We want to protect them with this very practical action.”
By building fencing and clearing the Ecopark, Augustin’s goal is also to offer to young people, from primary school to university, an environmental education so that they can better assimilate the challenges tied to the protection of their ecosystem and their culture. “For us, the Diola, nature is a gift from God and we respect it by rationally using its riches. But we are losing how we do so. I am very interested by medicinal plants, but this younger generation, who leave the villages for their studies, no longer know about and no longer know how to treat human beings.”
This love of nature and his region has been nurtured from his childhood at the end of the 1960’s, when he divided his time between “school and nature outings, fishing, and working with my parents in their rice plantations. After studying agriculture in France and then Switzerland, he returned to Casamance to help develop his region in particular by opening a travel agency and an ecolodge, Ouidja Hotel. Today with APES and his Ecopark, Augustin continues his green path so that we can all enjoy the beauty and benefits of Casamance nature.
Come on and visit!
Neither the name of a tribe, nor the name of a language, it isn’t easy to explain what exactly "Imraguen" means.
Imraguen is the identification with a specific way of life or better yet a singular way of fishing. According to “Le livre des Imraguen” by Marie-Laure de Noray-Dardenne, to be Imraguen is to “be part of the rich and fragile ecosystem which makes the Banc d’Arguin a joy of nature. Imraguen means those who live by the sea and who fish respectfully, without spoilage, waste. The Imraguen are the nomads of the sea.
Numbering at the very most about a thousand, the Imraguen are the only people authorized to live in the Banc d’Arguin National Park and to fish in its rich fishing waters. The Park is home to 9 villages, including Iwik, Sidi’s home, the best place for bird observation.
The Imraguen are known for a fascinating, abiding traditional fishing ritual, inspired by the natural conditions of the Banc d’Arguin: responsible and tactical fishing on foot of yellow mullet. From the shore, when a man indicates the passage of a school of fish, others enter the water with nets on their shoulders. By striking the water with sticks, they attract dolphins which create a barrier that prevent fish from escaping to sea. Driven to the shore, the mullets are surrounded by men and captured. Upon capture, the fish are opened, cleaned and dried by women. Every part of the fish is valued, including the ovaries of pregnant females, slightly salted and dried to make the “poutargue”, and the head and organs, boiled in water to extract an oil rich in trace elements and vitamins known as "dhên". These processing techniques, unique to the Imraguen, are ancient skills passed down from mother to daughter.
Canary Island fishermen, arriving in Banc d'Arguin in the 1930s, changed traditional fishing techniques introducing fishing from lanches. These unique motorless sailing vessels, allow the Imraguen to fish off the shallow waters of the Banc d'Arguin. Identified by the Park administration and limited in number, today there exist only a hundred that Imraguen are allowed to use the Park.
According to “Le livre des Imraguen” to live in protected areas such as the National Park of Banc d'Arguin, is to be willing to be guided by the laws of nature and how to safeguard it. Aware of their privileges in particularly in relation to fishing, Imraguens are involved in surveillance of the maritime park. In addition, with the desire to respect the riches of Banc d'Arguin, the Imraguens play a key role in the park, by initiating projects such as Sidi’s.
They are the people, the guardians and guarantors of the future of the Park. Support them!