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Old 20-04-2003, 01:35 PM
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Every poster tells a story !

Story and some photographs by John Brooksbank - Source : Paradise Mazagine No 152 - July - August 2002

Annual Subscription rates for six issues including postage are :
In Papua New Guinea - K50, Australia - K75 or AUD $40; Rest of the World - US $40.

Email: delta@daltron.com.pg

EVERY POSTER TELLS A STORY

Not exactly Rod Stewart's lyrics but no less true all the same - certainly regarding the philosophy behind the efforts of the World Wildlife Fund in Papua New Guinea to raise village level awareness of development issues.

The posters shown in this story are just some of the messages that WWF has sent allover the country. Over 150 different posters have been produced - with messages in English, Tok Pisin, Motu and some local languages in efforts to make sure they are understood by everyone.

Max Kuduk, project manager of the WWF Kikori ICDP (Integrated Conservation and Development Programme) says that one of the important roles of his organisation is to ensure that villagers who for thousands of years have focused only on the needs of their immediate family or clans people now broaden their horizons. Our challenge is to make conservation relevant to the average Papua New Guinean villager today.

Traditionally, in almost all areas except the Highlands, the prevalence of disease, poor soils or rugged terrain led to low village populations. This in turn meant that humans had little impact on the various environments they found themselves in. Only in the Highland valleys, where rich soils and the adoption of sweet potatoes as a staple allowed large population densities, were there significant habitat changes. Here, forest clearance and swamp drainage for large-scale rotational cultivation of sweet potatoes created the grasslands that characterise that region today.

Nowadays steadily increasing populations, large-scale plantings of cash crops, mining activities and the dramatic increase in logging has combined to have a significant impact on formerly pristine environments. This translates as an increased threat to the survival of rare indigenous plants, animals or insects that in many cases occur in only a very limited range. The people who are most familiar with those diverse environments are of course the village people who live there. And it is those people who are being targetted by the WWF awareness campaigns.

GONE FROM MANY PLACES - Still on your Land ?
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  #2  
Old 20-04-2003, 01:43 PM
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The colourful and eye-catching posters proclaim simple but important messages on resources in the country and development choices that are available to villagers. There are some quite startling facts that many people in Papua New Guinea may not be aware of. For example, did you know that the country has:
  • the world's tallest banana species;
  • the largest number of banana (400) and orchid (3000) species of any country in the world;
  • more bird species (725) than in North America;
  • the world's largest (female Queen Alexandra's Birdwing) and second largest butterfly, longest lizard (Salvadore's Monitor Lizard), largest pigeon (Southern Crown Pigeon);
  • the world's only bird that nests, sleeps and rears its young underground (Greater Melampitta);
  • 7% of the world's plant and animal species, although it has only 0.3% of the world's land mass.
The above impressive sample statistics relate only to what is known at present. WWF is actively involved in carrying out flora, fauna and diversity surveys within their ICDP area. These are initially baseline surveys and will subsequently serve to monitor how populations fare in the face of various developments - such as the large-scale commercial logging taking place in lowland Gulf Province.

Species numbers will only increase. In a recent short survey of frogs and reptiles in Lake Kutubu, Gobe and Kikori are, Steve Richards, a curator from the South Australian Museum, collected 29 reptiles and 62 types of frogs, of which 15 species are probably new to science.

The WWF Kikori ICDP constituency stretches from the Doma Peaks near Tari in the Southern Highlands to the Gulf of Papua. Stretching from the highlands to the coast, an area of approximately 2.5 million hectares, it encompasses the catchment of the Kikori River and also includes Mt Bosavi.

DID YOU KNOW ? Australia has about 1,000 different kinds of orchids; North America has only about 150 different kinds of orchids.....

BUT.......little PNG has more........lots more ! In our forests grow at least 3,000 different kinds of orchids, more than anyother country !
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Old 20-04-2003, 01:54 PM
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The project has been supported by Chevron Niugini Limited from 1995, when almost all costs were bomeby the resource developer, till today when they fund only a third of the annual budget. This close and mutually beneficial partnership was one of the first worldwide between a conservation agency and a multinational oil company.

We realised that although we were doing a lot of work preparing materials for distribution to local villagers by our extension patrols, there was a need to find a better way to disseminate information, ' said conservation science officer Ted Mamu.

At about the same time it was noticed that the few posters that had been produced were popular with staff of the nearby Chevron Niugini camp. 'We soon became aware that the posters were becoming popular with many ,organisations including schools, community groups and other NGOs allover the country and it was hard to keep up with demand, said Max Kuduk.

One of the capabilities that the organisation has been building up over the years is that of community outreach/publications - made more possible with the ever- decreasing cost of desktop publishing. Cain Lomai, the WWF Kikori ICDP community outreach coordinator, is now kept busy colour printing and laminating A4 and A3 posters for distribution to the villages in the ICDP operational area as well as schools and NGOs all over the country. It is felt that this work will pay long-term conservation dividends.

Fishes of the Kikori Basin........More Unique kinds than any place else in Papua New Guinea :

When scientists collected fishes in the streams and rivers of the Kikori Basin, they found that out of all the river drainage system in the entire island of New Guinea, the Kikori Basin river system had more kinds of fish found no place esle in the world.

The first blind fish (no eyes) discovered in New Guinea was discovered in the rivers that run underground in the Kikori Basin in 1995. Fish with no eyes ! They spend their whole lives in the dark !

One reason why the Kikori Basin is such a special place for fish is because the forests still hold the soil from washing into the rivers.

Are the Kikori Basin's fish important enough to local people so that they will keep looking after their habitats ?
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Old 20-04-2003, 01:59 PM
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Max Kukuk and his WWF Kikori ICDP team recognised that they needed to look at alternative ways to disseminate their community messages to the largest possible number of people. Posters alone would not be enough. Project staff also made regular appearances on the Southern Highlands and Gulf Provincial radio stations to provide information and advice on their activities.

Now all the information on the posters and more detailed reports are 'burned' onto CDs for distribution to schools and other agencies with computers.



PNG - A World "Megadiversity Hotspot " !

PNG covers less than 1% of the world's land.

Yet, scientists believe that PNG is home for around 7% of all the kinds of plants and animals in the world !

PNG has the world's most species rich coral reefs. It's forests are also packed with wildlife.

PNG has more than its faire share !


The fact that we're in the tropics is one reason why PNG has so much wildlife. Just as importantly, we haven't destroyed our land the way people in other tropical countries have.

Will we do what it takes to look after our world class resource ?

Or will we let it slowly disappear until we have lost one of the best thing to keep us from becoming a 'samting nating country ?


It all starts with your clan, on your land.
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Old 20-04-2003, 02:22 PM
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The same images and data have also been put on the WWF South Pacific web site for those who have Internet access.

In time WWF PNG will have its own website. The costs of production and distribution of the posters, CDs and other reports are currently being met by bilateral aid funding, but like any aid agency WWF is always on the lookout for additional donors!


PNG has a lot of plants and animals that are very special. Many are found no place else in the world....only in PNG !

These things aren't about money. They're about pride -

PNG's special wildlife.... of samting bilong PNG i winim olgeta narapela kantri.


It's the Largest Moth in the World !
It's called the Hercules Moth and it lives in many parts of Papua New Guinea. Have you seen it ?
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Old 20-04-2003, 02:30 PM
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DID YOU KNOW ? ........

Big big Australia has about 300 kinds of butterflies..........but littler PNG has more....a lot more....than that !


There are at least 900 kinds of butterflies known from PNG with more species still to be discovered.

Three times more butterflies in little PNG than in big, big Australia !

We're the clear winners in this competition with the developed countries.

And this isn't a samting nating' resource. People come to PNG to see the world's largest and second largest butterfly and other wildlife.

So....are we looking after those special natural resources that put us on top ? How ?
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Old 20-04-2003, 02:45 PM
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PNG is #1 in the world for orchids. Most PNG orchids live in big bush. If we destroy our forests, we destroy most of our orchids.

PNG's world famous orchids. Something worth keeping ?

Dispela samting i stap long han bilong yumi papa graun PNG tasol !


CLICK HERE to log onto a great website here in PNG in relation to Orchids :
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Old 20-04-2003, 03:04 PM
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The Second Largest Butterfly in the World !

Its called the Goliath Birdwing Butterfly. Very big ! The female is larger than the male - it's the female that has this world record !

Found onlyin a few areas of Papua New Guinea.

Yet known from many areas of the Kikori Basin up to Lake Kutubu and Bosavi.

The Goliath birdwing lives and reproduces in big bush forest areas.

What happens to the Golaith Birdwing if the big forests are destroyed ?
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Old 20-04-2003, 03:13 PM
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A long time ago, every place in Papua New Guinea had all kinds of birds, plants, fish, trees and other resources. Our land and water was really full of these wildlife resources. But some clans in PNG weren't very smart. They didn't think about what would happen later, if they hunted too many animals and birds.

Some clans lets their people set fires and garden everywhere until it destroyed the big bush forests where these animals, birds and other wildlife lived.

That's why if you go to the land of these people today here in PNG, you won't find these kind of animals and birds. You'll find kunai grass maybe. Or you'll find forest but none of these birds or animals. They're gone forever. No one realised that if you don't look after your resources, you'll end up be loosing them !

Are these animals and birds still on your land ? If they are, your clan is really lucky ! So what are you doing to make sure you always have these resources ? It's not the responsibilityof the Government top look after this wildlife. The wildlife belongs to you.

So it's mostly YOUR responsiblility !
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Old 20-04-2003, 05:49 PM
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The only Bird in the World...............
  • known to sleep underground
  • lay eggs and raise its young underground
  • while running on top of ruggest limestone karst like a rat during the day !


This bird is called the " Greater Melampitta ". The Kikori Basin is one of the few places in the world where this bird lives. It is heard more often than it is ever seen.
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