Activities of The A. P. Leventis, The West African Foremost Ornithological Research Center.
The University of Jos Biological Conservatory (A.P. Leventis Ornithological Research Institute (APLORI)), Nigeria is the only field station dedicated to ornithological research and conservation training in West Africa. APLORI contributes directly to the knowledge infrastructure within the sub-region, while also providing a unique base from which to set up long-term ecological research projects in West Africa. The Institute was set up through a Memorandum of Understanding between the University of Jos, the Leventis Conservation Foundation, which remains the Institute’s principal source of funding, the Nigerian Conservation Foundation (NCF) and the Laminga Community. The Institute works closely with the local community as an employer and a facilitator of local sustainable development. Currently the Institute is running a Masters programme in Conservation Biology and is now in its sixth year. Several West African students have reached a European Masters' standard. The Institute also acts as host to UK PhD projects including 5 so far from St Andrews, Scotland, a funded Ph.D project of the Royal Society for the Protection of Bird (RSPB) on biodiversity in a centre of endemism in Nigeria, various post-doctoral research projects (e.g. diversity of avian malaria and premigration fattening strategies) from the University of Lund, Sweden and various short-term Courses on Biodiversity Conservation. The University of Jos Biological Conservatory has established a strong community development unit in several projects including the Fuel-efficient Stove Project, Laminga Forest Management Committee, Children for Nature Project, Bee-Keepers Association and the Women Group Association for the benefit of the Laminga people.