It is with great sadness that African Parks relay’s the news of the passing of two of West Africa’s great conservationists, Philippe Bouché and Dr Francis Lauginie. Philippe Bouché and a guide tragically passed away on the 5th of April in the W National Park in Niger, as the ultralight aircraft he was piloting crashed shortly after take-off. He leaves behind his wife and two children. Philippe was instrumental in the implementation of the IUCN’s CITES Monitoring the Illegal Killing of Elephants (MIKE) programme in the W-Arly-Pendjari Complex and carried out numerous elephant population surveys in the region. Philippe was recognised as a prominent elephant expert in West Africa and his commitment and contribution to conservation is widely acknowledged. His loss is a devastating blow to conservation in Africa. To read more please click here.
Another West African conservation icon, Dr Francis Lauginie, sadly passed away on the 4th of April in Toulouse, France, after losing his battle with cancer. Dr Lauginie, who was approaching 70, dedicated 40 years of his life to conservation in Côte d'Ivoire and was without a doubt one of the most respected conservationists in Western and Central Africa.
On behalf of everyone at African Parks, we extend our deepest sympathies and heartfelt condolences to the families and loved ones of both Philippe Bouché and Dr Francis Lauginie.