Dr. Lynne R. Baker (IDECC), Sarah Farinelli (George Mason University-USA)


  • Leventis Foundation (sponsor)
  • Wildlife Department, Adamawa State Ministry of Environment and Natural Resources Development
  • Department of Forestry and Wildlife Management, Gombe State Ministry of Environment and Forest Resources


This project involves a survey of hippopotamus in focal sites (e.g. large-dam reservoirs along major rivers) in Nigeria. This census work will include assessing threats and testing and comparing a traditional survey method (counts from boats) with remote-sensing survey methods using UAVs (unmanned aerial vehicles/drones) and a non-rigid airship system (blimp). It will also include training for local collaborators to help build capacity for improved hippo management and conservation. Finally, the project will develop conservation awareness materials for widespread distribution in local communities and among local collaborators. 

Progress in 2020

In 2020, established Hippo Network Nigeria (HiNN), a social-media (WhatsApp) group to increase awareness and share information about the common hippopotamus (Hippopotamus amphibius) in Nigeria. Also published results of a census of a hippo population in northeastern Nigeria ( The pandemic prevented fieldwork in 2020, but planning continued for surveys of hippos in three sites in Nigeria in 2021, as well as conservation awareness efforts in these sites.

© Pictures by Dr. Lynne R. Baker