High Conservation Value Assessments

How do we conduct a High Conservation Value (HCV) Assessment?

A variety of techniques will be applied to sample the available faunal and fish species in the project area. These sampling methods include camera traps, small mammal traps, cast nets, fyke nets, gill nets, angling and electro-fishing and are dependent on-site characteristics.

Faunal community structures and diversity will be determined where possible and if necessary; this information will be used to investigate basic community characteristics. The information and specific characteristics of dominant and present species. Faunal and Floral samples may be collected for identification.

In order to comply with HCV assessment guidelines, the conservation status and degree of endemism of fauna and flora communities will be determined using the International Union for the Conservation of Nature.

Following on from the baseline studies, the following will be carried out:

– Identification and species list generation; and
– Data analysis and mapping of sample areas, habitat types, and specific important species locations. All lists will also be assessed against a database in order to determine their IUCN and CITES status, as well as scientific publications reviewed, and specialist opinion used to determine conservation importance of species not assessed for IUCN.

Once mapping, statistics, and conservation important species analysis has been done, the additional components can be completed.

The social and ecosystem services lead will visit the plantation following the desktop review and carry out assessments on site to identify any gaps in existing data. A detailed eco system services and social assessment will include the engagement of the local communities and stakeholders through individual and group discussions. Questionnaires will be used where applicable with the support of local translators. Participatory mapping will be facilitated throughout the villages within the concession.