Ecotourism

A lush rainforest may generate more income than its logged wood and nutrient poor soil. Wild animals can be worth more alive in their habitats than dead at the market. Natural resources and wildlife are often sold as commodities in local, global, and illegal trades. But local communities can benefit from alternative—more sustainable—revenue streams that encourage and promote their area’s ecological integrity. Carefully managed ecotourism does just that.

In African jungles and Asian forests, WCS scientists are assessing the potential for ecotourism. They are helping to create the infrastructure for ecotourism activities and integrate local communities into the business of showing world travelers that their natural heritage is special and worth protecting. WCS helps incorporate community members into hospitality services and trains guides so they can identify local species and environmentally unique features of the landscape.

WCS Projects

Birding in Tmatboey, Cambodia

One of Cambodia’s poorest regions is rich in rare birdlife—in particular, the giant ibis and its cousin the white-shouldered ibis. Decades of violent conflict and a remote location kept naturalists and birdwatchers away. But now, birders travel from around the world in the hopes of seeing the ibises and other majestic species.

From the Newsroom

Wild Haven of CambodiaApril 9, 2012

Birdwatchers from across Asia and beyond flock to Cambodia for a glimpse of two of the world's rarest birds: the giant ibis and its cousin the white-shouldered ibis. The birds’ nesting grounds sit at the outskirts of Tmatboey, a rural village where WCS has worked with the community to develop an eco-tourism project.

A Birder's-Eye View of BrazilMarch 23, 2011

A new book series, Birds of Brazil, explores how the hobby of birdwatching can encourage conservation. The first stop for the field guides? The Pantanal and Cerrado.

Road to Bisect the SerengetiAugust 25, 2010

The government of Tanzania plans to build a highway through Serengeti National Park, potentially disrupting one of the world’s biggest migrations of large mammals and jeopardizing a popular tourism destination. WCS and partners urge the country's officials to consider alternate routes.

New Park for AfghanistanApril 22, 2009

Afghanistan has announced some rare good news: the establishment of its first national park. The park, known as Band-e-Amir, will protect one of the country’s best-known natural areas.

~/media/Images/wcs org/forms/please donate to help conservation.png
Stay in touch with WCS and receive the latest news.