Monitoring giraffe populations with GCF
Welcoming giraffes back to Edinburgh Zoo in 2021 involved building a partnership with Giraffe Conservation Foundation (GCF), the only organisation in the world that concentrates solely on the conservation and management of giraffe in the wild throughout Africa. GCF are an international science-based conservation organisation that provides innovative approaches to save giraffe in the wild.
As well as raising awareness and funds to halt the silent extinction facing giraffe in the wild, the RZSS WildGenes team is helping GCF monitor their giraffe reintroduction programmes across Uganda.
Using DNA from giraffe samples collected by GCF, our WildGenes team are able to investigate the genetic diversity of translocated giraffe populations. By understanding the genetic diversity of the founders of a population, we’re able to inform the GCF team about the genetics of the translocated herd and begin to forecast what the future for the population may look like and whether further reinforcement efforts may be required.