Biodiversity

& conservation projects

The biodiversity of Anjajavy

A wealth to discover and protect

Inventories and observations of animal and plant species at Anjajavy show a great biological richness with no less than 5 critically endangered, 14 endangered, and 13 vulnerable to extinction. Most of these species are either endemic to Madagascar or the nearby region.

Each year, our naturalist visitors’ observations – scientists or amateurs – update a significant number of new or undescribed species. Some of them, such as the Tahina spectabilis palm, has caused a tremendous scientific community stir. You can already discover all the species on Inaturalist, our online inventory.

Natural habitats

1

A forest

Rare and precious

Classified by the WWF (World Wildlife Fund) among the global conservation priorities, the dry deciduous forest is home to communities of rare and endemic species of fauna and flora.

2

Mangroves

Vital to the ecosystem

The Anjajavy Protected Area protects and is protected to the north and west by three large distinct mangroves and their sinuous tidal channels. Hundreds of species of fish, shellfish, insects and birds rely on this habitat for food and shelter. It is also one of the world's most effective natural carbon sinks.

3

A land of Baobabs

Majestic emblem of Madagascar

The Big Island is the home of seven species of baobab trees, six of which are endemic to the island. In Anjajavy, you will meet three species: the grey (Adansonia madagascariensis), the African (Adansonia digitata) and the baobab fony (Adansonia rubrostipa). The last one, endemic to the ecoregion, is red and gold in colour with patterns that look like they were painted by hand.

4

The Tsingy

Or "Forest of stones"

These vast areas of friable rock and limestone appeared millions of years ago and were formed when Madagascar separated from the rest of Africa. These formations are also composed of fossilized shells, some of which may date back to the Jurassic period. Over the years, the rains and winds have carved the rock, forming a landscape of supernatural beauty. It's even possible to see baobabs growing on these Tsingys in Moramba Bay.

5

A private marine reserve

The jewels of the natural heritage

The private peninsula of Anjajavy le Lodge is bordered by seven isolated creeks on 3500 meters facing the Mozambique Canal. Along this coast, a 400 meter long strip of sea is protected from fishing and hunting since the construction of the protected area of Anjajavy. The marine wealth of this nature reserve benefits from the proximity of mangroves and forests. A wide variety of tropical fish can be found there in large numbers. Every year, marine turtles come to lay their eggs on these beaches, which are undoubtedly the same beach where they were born. The hatching of the eggs and the race to the sea by the baby turtles offer one of nature's most unforgettable experiences.

1
2
3
4
5

A forest

Rare and precious

Classified by the WWF (World Wildlife Fund) among the global conservation priorities, the dry deciduous forest is home to communities of rare and endemic species of fauna and flora.

Mangroves

Vital to the ecosystem

The Anjajavy Protected Area protects and is protected to the north and west by three large distinct mangroves and their sinuous tidal channels. Hundreds of species of fish, shellfish, insects and birds rely on this habitat for food and shelter. It is also one of the world’s most effective natural carbon sinks.

A land of Baobabs

Majestic emblem of Madagascar

The Big Island is the home of seven species of baobab trees, six of which are endemic to the island. In Anjajavy, you will meet three species: the grey (Adansonia madagascariensis), the African (Adansonia digitata) and the baobab fony (Adansonia rubrostipa). The last one, endemic to the ecoregion, is red and gold in colour with patterns that look like they were painted by hand.

The Tsingys

Or “forest of stones”

These vast areas of friable rock and limestone appeared millions of years ago and were formed when Madagascar separated from the rest of Africa. These formations are also composed of fossilized shells, some of which may date back to the Jurassic period. Over the years, the rains and winds have carved the rock, forming a landscape of supernatural beauty. It’s even possible to see baobabs growing on these Tsingys in Moramba Bay.

A private marine reserve

The jewels of the natural heritage

The private peninsula of Anjajavy le Lodge is bordered by seven isolated creeks on 3500 meters facing the Mozambique Canal. Along this coast, a 400 meter long strip of sea is protected from fishing and hunting since the construction of the protected area of Anjajavy. The marine wealth of this nature reserve benefits from the proximity of mangroves and forests. A wide variety of tropical fish can be found there in large numbers. Every year, marine turtles come to lay their eggs on these beaches, which are undoubtedly the same beach where they were born. The hatching of the eggs and the race to the sea by the baby turtles offer one of nature’s most unforgettable experiences.

The biodiversity

Lemurs

Birds

Reptiles & Amphibians

Mammals

The Lemurs

A happy cohabitation

The lemurs of Anjajavy le Lodge are easy to observe in their natural environment. These adorable and harmless animals leap from tree to tree to reach the budding trees around the Lodge.

The most acrobatic is the beautiful Coquerel Sifakas, a species of lemur endemic to northwestern Madagascar. In the Protected Area, these lemurs coexist naturally with many of their day and night cousins, moving freely in our gardens and surrounding forests searching for food.

A profusion of birds

A paradise for birdwatchers

Anjajavy’s inventories report the presence of more than 134 distinct species of birds in the Reserve. Many magnificent, rare, and endemic birds can be observed by naturalists and birdwatchers, many of whom are familiar with Anjajavy’s international reputation.

Anjajavy is, for example, one of the best places to see the Malagasy Fishing Eagle (Haliaeetus vociferous), the timid Crested Ibis (Lophotibis cristata), or the elegant Sacred Ibis of Madagascar (Threskiornis bernieri).

Reptiles & Amphibians

A wonderful diversity

Anjajavy’s tropical climate and constant sunshine create the perfect environment for around forty species. Each tree seems to be home to a gecko in the colours of precious stones or a stealthy chameleon.

Snake lovers can observe harmless species such as the strange leaf-nosed snake or the fabulous Madagascar bao without apprehension.

Sea turtles regularly come to lay their eggs on the peninsula’s beaches, and their hatching offers us an unforgettable spectacle.

Small and large mammals

Essential in the ecosystem

Without counting lemurs, the Anjajavy Protected Area registers 12 species of mammals.
The largest mammals, including the marine life, include the Fossa, which is endemic to Madagascar’s island.

The Fossa Cryptoprocta ferox is the largest carnivorous mammal on the island. Compared to a small puma, its diet can vary according to its habitat or even specialize according to the available food resource. Discreet and shy, it is as agile on the ground as it is in the canopy.

As for Madagascar’s smallest mammals, they are related to hedgehogs, the tangoes. Most of them, like bats, are in danger of extinction.

Les projets de conservation

Giant tortoises

Aye-aye

Fossa

Reforestation

Madagascar giant tortoises

First reintroduction of the megafauna

Madagascar lost its entire biological community of large vertebrates between 500 and 1300 years ago due to over-exploitation by the first men who colonized the island.

The giant Aldabrachelys gigantea tortoise is the only species of Madagascar’s megafauna that remains to this day. In order to escape from Man, they let themselves drift across the ocean from Madagascar to find refuge on the Aldabra Atoll.

The Anjajavy Protected Area was chosen by Dr Miguel Pedrono, a conservation biologist, and the Malagasy Government to carry out the very first reintroduction of giant turtles in Madagascar.
The long-term objective of this innovative project is to develop an ecological restoration plan for Anjajavy based on the establishment of a large and viable population of giant turtles.

The Aye-aye lemur

An outcast, welcome to Anjajavy

With its strange-looking white face, yellow eyes and skeletal fingers, the nocturnal animal is hunted throughout the big island, victim of superstitious beliefs and its reputation as a coconut thief. The region of Antonibe – a rural commune that includes Anjajavy – is no exception. The animal has disappeared from the great forest of Anjajavy, where the elderly remember seeing it regularly as a child. The species is now in danger of extinction.

In order to safeguard the species, a research program in partnership with the University of Antananarivo and a research centre at the University of Omaha in the United States was initiated in 2015, and led in 2018 to a project to reintroduce a female Aye-aye (Soalina) and her daughter (Kintana) into the Anjajavy Protected Area.
One of the main steps of this project was to raise awareness and educate the residents of the Protected Area on the importance of safeguarding the species.

The Fossa

Not just a chicken thief

Madagascar’s largest mammal is endemic to the island. Although it looks like a puma and therefore a feline, it is actually more related to mongooses and civets. Very agile in trees, its long tail helps it to balance itself in the branches.

The Fossa is an animal vulnerable to extinction, and as a hunter of chickens and livestock, it is often not welcome around houses.

A compensation fund has been set up to help villagers adapt to the presence of these animals (e.g. building special henhouses) and a Anjajavy Fossa Festival is organised every year to raise awareness among the inhabitants living around the Protected Area about the protection of these animals.

The reforestation campaigns

Efforts to conserve the biotope

Since 2009, Anjajavy le Lodge has reforested more than 350,000 trees of non-invasive indigenous or pantropical species on the eroded areas of the Anjajavy Protected Area. Nurseries are carefully maintained around Anjajavy le Lodge. Varieties are chosen according to the land and reforestation objectives.

Reforestation of fruit trees such as mango, lemon and cashew trees will provide agricultural income. Ebony and rosewood are also replanted for possible exploitation for craftwork in the future. Different varieties of mangroves are planted on salty and near-sea land, which will act as a natural barrier to erosion, salt winds and rising waters, and bring evapotranspiration to the region’s forest ecosystems.