5-14 January 2022
The Ankasa Conservation Area is located in the southwest of the country near the border with Côte d'Ivoire. It is the only wildlife protection area in Ghana located in the evergreen rainforest belt. Its biological diversity is still fabulous with over 800 species of vascular plants, 639 species of butterflies and over 190 species of birds. Chimpanzees and other elephants have disappeared. Again, protection exists only on paper: the few rangers are poorly geared with a few old rifles, almost no vehicle, no radio and, logically, they are demotivated... Their camp in the middle of the forest, where it was once possible to camp, is now abandoned. Let's hope that the next government will be more sensitive to the environment challenges and proactive in the conservation of the animal and plant species still present in Ghana.
In this beautiful and dense forest, birds are very difficult to observe even if a wide forest road leading to three ponds allows a slightly open view. We still managed to see most of our targets thanks to our tireless guide Robert with, as a bonus, a huge West African Gaboon viper. It had just fed and was almost still in the digestion phase, so we could admire it for at least an hour at a few centimetres!
On one of the ponds, we were lucky enough to catch a glimpse of the rarest Crocodile on the continent, the West African slender-snouted crocodile and at the side of the road, we were pleased to discover two species of Orchid.
Ankasa is without doubt the most beautiful and quietest place we have visited in Ghana.
We slept at the Frenchman's camp, a small village camp created by a late Ivorian photographer. Most people speak French and it was the nicest place, along ith Bobiri, that we stayed.
Ankasa is not the place where we observed the most bird species, but it is definitely our favourite!
To finish the trip a little bit green in the megacity of Accra, we spent a nice half day in the botanical garden of the university. As always in urban parks, the animals are less shy, especially in a country where poaching is common... It was a nice surprise to see this little garden left a bit neglected, which is good for the wildlife!
1. Shai Hills and Kalakpa forest
4. Mole national park and Tango Hills
6. Ankasa Conservation Area and Accra botanic garden