The Last Survivors


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The Last Survivors website raises awareness of the last surviving Caribbean endemic land mammals and focusses conservation attention on these valuable but highly threatened species.

Before humans arrived, around 120 species of land mammal (excluding bats) occurred in the Caribbean region, but many have now gone extinct, some very recently, with possibly only 15 surviving today.

For two of the “Last Survivors”, the Hispaniolan solenodon and Hispaniolan hutia, a Darwin-Initiative funded project was launched in the Dominican Republic in October 2009. It is a collaborative effort between Dominican and UK partners, led by the Durrell Wildlife Conservation Trust and Sociedad Ornitológica de la Hispaniola. Its goal is to conduct field research on these poorly known species to assess their status, identify their conservation needs, to develop monitoring tools and to plan their long-term conservation.

The Last Survivors website reports the main outputs of the project, such as scientific findings, news articles, and conservation plans. You will also be able to track the development of our species range maps, which will be updated regularly with survey data soon after they are collected in the field. Regular blog updates from the field team and English and Spanish language Facebook groups will give you an insight into life working in the Dominican forests, and so you can find out how the project is progressing.  And with lots of video and photos of solenodons and hutias, and background information on their ecology and main threats, we hope that these highly valuable species are better understood – and ultimately better protected.

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