In March, we went to Tesso Nilo National Park. Most of the park’s natural forests have given way to acacia and oil palm plantation, most of which are illegal. We surveyed in acacia plantations boarding the park; there is conflict between settlers and the government around the oil palm plantations within the park, so those areas were unfortunately off-limits to survey. The verdict is still out on acacia plantations (wood which is used for the pulp and paper industry), but the general thinking is that between it and oil palm, animals prefer acacia. The canopy of an oil palm plantation is usually pretty dense, blocking most sunlight and prohibiting under story plants to grow. Animals prefer areas with under story; it helps them hide from predators and provides a richer environment for food and shelter. Though still no comparison in biological diversity and value to natural forests, we found quite a number animals signs. Take a look:

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