We have granted £1500 to Amani Friends of Nature, a non-government organisation in Tanzania, to help conserve an IUCN red-listed species in the East Usambara Mountains. The Amani Flatwing damselfly (Amanipodagrion gilliesi) is now thought to be restricted to a single site in the Amani Nature Reserve which is an internationally recognised biodiversity hotspot.

First described in 1959, the Amani Flatwing was observed again in the early 2000s by the well-known German entomologist, Dr Viola Clausnitzer. Dr Clausnitzer worked with local conservationists to help protect the known habitat of the damselfly. However, the survival of the damselfly remains extremely precarious and a single adverse event such as pollutants entering the streams could wipe out the entire population.

Amani Friends of Nature are carrying out surveys to establish where the Amani Flatwing is now present. Their staff are working closely with local villagers bordering the Nature Reserve to raise awareness of the importance of conserving habitats to protect the damselfly and other vulnerable species. Together with other stakeholders, including the Forestry Service and local government officials, they will develop an action plan with practical measures to conserve the habitat; for example, identifying more suitable facilities for people to wash their clothes so that they do not have to do this in the streams.