Nyungwe Lepidoptera Diversity Project.

Gael Vande weghe and Eric Vingerhoedt


A better knowledge leads to an efficient conservation !

Please : Stop to the wrong targets !!


Objectives :

General :  

    The purpose of this study is essentially an improvement of biogeographic and ecological knowledge of the fauna of butterflies and some families of beetles of the Nyungwe Forest National Park (Rwanda) and to highlight the local characteristics of the faune. It will also contribute to a better knowledge of the central African ecosystem in general.


Specific :

1- Rediscover some desribed species that are poorly known.

2- Iimprove and complete the list of the known species of the Nyungwe Forest National Park.

3- Improve and add data on their geographical and ecological distribution.

4- Establish basic knowledge that will enable the use of target butterfly species (or group of species) as bio indicators (biodiversity indicators and/or state and health of the forest.

5- Train local eco-guide and local community on entomology. (Various family recognition, biodiversity sensibilisation).


Distribution and presence of the species

Establish the list of the diurnal species of butterflies of the forest of Nyungwe allready collected. This list will be based on :

                                                 1.      Specimens in museum collections (Musée Royal d'Afrique Centrale) in Tervuren, Natural History Museum in Paris, Natural History Museum in London and National Museum in Nairobi) and in a few private collections.

                                                 2.      The existing literature.

Gather sampling localities in a geographical database system and identify priority zones for complementary prospections ; a priority will be the various habitats within the National Park limits for their better definition.

 Field sampling in the locations identified as priority.

 Identification of the specimens collected during sampling.

 Validation of identifications by taxonomic experts of their respective families.

Production of a more global litterature of the diurnal butterflies of the forest of Nyungwe.


General Check-list


Partnership :


SEA (Société d’Entomologie Africaine)  

Gaël Vande weghe : Project leader, (global coordination of the project, monthly and annual report reviewing and production, communication between, partners.SEA member.

Entomological expertise: Central african rhopaloceral).

Eric Vingerhoedt : SEA administrator, Technical coordination, follow-up and reception of samples, focal point between the various specialist. Logistics supplies and shipping.

Entomological expertise: Charaxinae and Acraeinae.

Thierry Bouyer : SEA Administrator, Biologist.

Entomological expertise: Bombycoidea (Lepidoptera), Prioninae and Lucaninae (Coleoptera).

Philippe Léonard : SEA Active member.

Entomological expertise: Coleoptera.

Alain Drumont : SEA Administrator  and IRSNB Biologist.

Albert Legrain : SEA Member.

Entomological Expertise : Heterocera.

Yannick de Walque : Kigali based logistics, monthly provisioning on the field, samples handling and shipping.

O.R.T.P.N. (Rwanda Office of Tourism and National Park)

Emmanuel Hakizimana : Plannification, research and monitoring. research authorisation, park entrance for the specific follow-up missions, communication and ORTPN authority on the project, follow-up of the project in Kigali.

ABRI (African Butterfly Research Institute)  

Steve Collins : ABRI director, principal sponsor, preparation and storage of the principal samples, 

Entomological expertise : Rhopalocera.

M.R.A.C. (Museum Royal d'Afrique Central) :  

Hugo Dall’asta : Head of Entomology section, Lepidoptera laboratory,

Entomological expertise: Liimantridae and other heteroceras  

Jurate De Prins : Entomology section, entomological expertise: Microlepidoptera.


Check list congo