The objectives of this project in Phou Sithone ESCA are threefold. These include no killing of Saola and significant reduction in the number of snares detected, reduced destruction of habitat, and increased support for the conservation of Saola in village surrounding the conservation area.
The project team will measure the performance of patrol teams by assessing their effort and results using advanced law enforcement monitoring known as SMART. Already teams have removed over 7,000 snares from the conservation area.
In the long term the grantee ultimately aims to increase the number of Saola individuals in the conservation area. However monitoring this outcome is a challenge as Saolas are notoriously difficult to detect and previous methods have proven ineffective. That being said, the Wildlife Conservation Society is working with partners to develop and test new methods of detection, including the search for traces of Saola DNA in the blood of leeches in the forest.