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WCC 2016 Res 019 - Activity Report

General Information
IUCN Constituent: 
IUCN Constituent type: 
IUCN Species Survival Commission 2017-2020
Period covered: 
Geographic scope: 
In implementing this Resolution your organization has worked/consulted with...
IUCN Members: 
Bat Conservation International, Inc ( BCI ) / United States of America
Mauritian Wildlife Foundation ( MWF ) / Mauritius
Ministry of Agro Industry and Food Security / Mauritius
IUCN Commissions: 
IUCN Secretariat: 
Other non-IUCN related organisations: 
Bat Conservation Trust, Ecosystem Restoration Alliance, Indian Ocean
Indicate and briefly describe any actions that have been carried out to implement this Resolution: 
Convene stakeholders/NetworkingNote: also fits Scientific/technical and Policy influencing The second workshop in the joint initiative “The people, bats and fruit industry of Mauritius: a process towards a common solution” was held 9-10 May 2018 in Mauritius. The "Mauritius Fruit Bat Research Strategy Workshop" was prepared and planned jointly by the National Parks and Conservation Services (Mauritius), the IUCN SSC Human- Wildlife Conflict Task Force, the IUCN SSC Bat Specialist Group, the Mauritian Wildlife Foundation (MWF) and Chester Zoo. The aim was to provide an interactive platform to share knowledge and to propose new research avenues that would harmonise the issue of human-bat conflict. Workshop objectives were: 1) To bring together stakeholders representing a range of scientific and research disciplines from Mauritius and overseas in order to share information and to contribute to the initial stages of producing a research strategy. 2) Exchange current knowledge concerning fruit bats globally from the social, economic and natural sciences perspectives. 3) Learn about current, ongoing and planned research projects encompassing all aspects of Mauritius fruit bats, their aims, objectives, schedules and intended outputs. 4) Identify priority research questions and areas for focused study, and collate this towards an outline of a national research strategy on Mauritius fruit bats and their conservation and management. It is hoped that workshop outcomes will form the basis of a National Research Strategy.Completed
Education/Communication/Raising awarenessA number of publications came out in 2018 that directly address this issue. Florens, F. B. V., & Baider, C. (2019 -- online in 2018). Mass-culling of a threatened island flying fox species failed to increase fruit growers’ profits and revealed gaps to be addressed for effective conservation. Journal for Nature Conservation, 47, 58-64. Anthony, B. P., Tatayah, V., & De Chazal, D. (2018). Taking the first steps: Initial mapping of the human-wildlife interaction of the Mauritius Fruit Bat Pteropus niger (Mammalia: Chiroptera: Pteropodidae) in Mauritius by conservation organizations. Journal of Threatened Taxa, 10(8), 12073-12081. Florens, F. V., & Vincenot, C. E. (2018). Broader conservation strategies needed. Science, 362(6413), 409-409. Oleksy R Z, Ayady C L, Tatayah V, Jones C, Froidevaux J S P, Racey P A & Jones G (2018). The impact of the Mauritian flying fox Pteropus niger on commercial fruit farms and the efficacy of mitigation. Oryx. doi:10.1017/S0030605318001138.Completed
Policy influencing/advocacyAn injunction has been entered in court by Fabiola Monty (Dis-Moi Ocean Indien) in November 2018 to try to put an end to the third cull (November and December 2018), on animal welfare grounds. Whilst an end to that cull did not occur due to the injunction, the case is still being heard in early 2019.On-going
Policy influencing/advocacyIn response to the cull of 2018, the IUCN issued a position statement on the culling (released 10 December 2018). The statement appealed to the Mauritian Government to halt culling of the Mauritian Fruit Bat and make a strong commitment to search for effective non-lethal strategies to the conflict with fruit growers by adopting recommendations arising from "The people, bats and fruit industry of Mauritius" initiative (position statement link provided below)Completed
Policy influencing/advocacyWhen it became known that a third cull was planned in 2018, a letter was sent from IUCN Secretariat (signed by Dr Jane Smart - 25 October 2018) expressing concern about the proposed cull.Completed
Scientific/technical activitiesThe government culls (late 2015, late 2016) of P. niger on Mauritius triggered a reassessment of the Red List Status of the species. The assessment was published in July 2018. The species was raised from VU to EN.Completed
Please report on the result /achievement of the actions taken: 
Research Strategy Workshop: Identified priority research questions in four areas - biology and ecology, economics, social/human
dimensions, and crop damage assessment and mitigation (see report).
What challenges have you encountered in implementing this Resolution and what measures have you taken to overcome them?: 
Political motivation behind the culls in Mauritius and the polarized and entrenched perspectives of the general public towards the species. We continue a multi-faceted strategy centered on conflict-resolution, ecological and economic research, and damage mitigation, but are yet to overcome the challenges.
Identify and briefly describe what future actions are planned for the implementation of this Resolution: 
Future ActionDescription
Policy influencing/advocacyThe third event of the “The people, bats and fruit industry of Mauritius: a process towards a common solution” is planned for 2019. which aims to bring together stakeholders together with representatives from the general public, tourism sector, the media, and others who are affected by, and influence, the discourse and decision-making around Mauritius Fruit Bats.
Scientific/technical activitiesThe third cull was implemented late 2018, with a target of 20% of the population (about 12K bats). We await official reporting on the numbers killed, but it is highly likely that we will need to revisit and update the assessment.
Additional Information