Vietnam pheasant recovery team

Working along IUCN - SSC’s one plan approach the Vietnam pheasant recovery team brings together all conservation partners involved with the Vietnam pheasant.

Viet Nature played a crucial in the formation of this group, organizing in country workshops that resulted in the creation of a 2015-2020 action plan, which highlighted 4 key actions needed to save this species. Focusing on site protection and management, conservation breeding, research and coordination and resource mobilization. These workshops and the action plan brought all involved parties in Vietnam together. Because one of the goals was conservation breeding of this species in Vietnam, contact was made with the World Pheasant Association (WPA) and the EAZA (European Association of Zoos and Aquaria) Galliformes TAG (Taxon Advisory Group) who run an Ex Situ conservation breeding program for the Vietnam pheasant.

In the meantime, Berlin Zoo (through the efforts of Tobias Rahde) started to financially support Viet Nature, first for camera trap surveys, later by providing and seeking funds for a conservation breeding center (Karlsruhe Zoo and the German Zoo Association). Pham Tuan Anh (Viet Nature President and Deputy Director) took every opportunity she had to travel to Europe and meet with representatives from WPA and EAZA, creating a strong working bond. Also, Prague Zoo arranged the transport of 2 pairs of Vietnam pheasants to Hanoi Zoo to strengthen the population of Vietnam pheasants under human care in Vietnam.

During the 2018 Long Term Management Planning session at Antwerp Zoo, facilitated by EAZA and CPSG (Conservation Planning Specialist Group), a plan was created on how to establish a population of Vietnam pheasants in conservation breeding centers in Vietnam, which could be used as a source for future reintroduction efforts. Besides representatives of WPA and EAZA the meeting was also attended by a representative of Birdlife International (Nigel Collar), who has since been strongly involved. The final spark to set the recovery team off happened during the 2019 World Pheasant Association Symposium in Vietnam, where Simon Dowell (Galliformes Specialist Group, Chester Zoo), Nigel Collar (Birdlife International) and Tuan Anh Pham (Viet Nature) put their heads together and decided that in addition to a general plan for the captive management and the 2015-2020 action plan a larger plan would be necessary to coordinate the entire effort with the long term goal of restoring the Vietnam Pheasant in the wild. This led to the creation of the Vietnam Pheasant Recovery team. The members of this team are Nigel Collar (Birdlife International), Simon Dowell (IUCN Galliformes Specialist Group and Chester Zoo), Tuan Anh Pham and Trai Le Trong (Viet Nature), Jo Gregson (WPA), Ludo Pinceel (WPA), Katharina Herman (Berlin Zoo), Sonja Luz (Wildlife reserves Singapore), Sarah Patterson (St’ Augustine Alligator farm) and Jan Dams (EAZA Galliformes TAG, Antwerp Zoo).

The plan has set four main goals. (1) Captive population management, (2) Identification and preparation of areas for reintroduction (3) actual reintroduction and (4) Public and institutional engagement and financial support.