We are very pleased to announce that IUCN has now formally established the IUCN SSC (Species Survival Commission) Giraffe and Okapi Specialist Group (GOSG). This is very is exciting news for the conservation and management of these two iconic species. These two last surviving giraffid species, both endemic to Africa, share a distinct genetic lineage as well as a paucity of focused research and conservation efforts. Although widespread and common in places, overall populations of both species are declining; we therefore hope the GOSG will help to attract and strengthen international support and provide an official forum to support the implementation of strategies to conserve the species.
The two co‐chairs for the group are Dr Julian Fennessy (giraffe) and Dr Noëlle Kümpel from ZSL (okapi), while the Giraffe Conservation Foundation and ZSL will provide host institution support to the two branches respectively. Development of an official GOSG website is underway, but in the meantime, to find out more about the GOSG and other IUCN SSC Specialist Groups go to www.iucn.org.
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