Îles Ehotilés National Park is a national park in the Sud-Comoé region of Ivory Coast. The park consists of a group of low islands and the intervening channels which separate Aby Lagoon from the Atlantic Ocean. The national park was established in 1974 on the initiative of the local communities
The Ehotile Islands were erected as a National Park by Decree N074-1 79 of 25 April 1974 on the initiative of the local communities (unique case in Côte d'lvoire and even in West Africa).
The Ehotilé Islands National Park is a group of 6 islands (Assokomonobaha, Balouate, Meha, Nyamouan, Elouamin and the sacred island Bosson Assoun) located in the estuarine area on the east coast of Cote d'lvoire. This archipelago covers an area of 550 ha without counting the innumerable channels and other arms of lagoon which border it. According to the marine influence, the Ehotile Islands can be divided into two parts:
- the first part includes the islands Assokomonobaha (or Assoko), Balouhaté, Elouamin, Meha and Nyamouan. These 5 islands are located in a strictly estuarine zone and form with three other islands a real delta just before the mouth of the lagoon complex Aby.
- the second part is constituted by Bosson Assoun Island. It is located in an area oligo-haline, between Ebrié and Tendo lagoons, about 2 km off M'braty.
The ABY lagoon from which these islands emerge is one of the largest lagoon waterways in the country. It receives the mainland waters of several rivers, the most important of which are Bia in the north and Tanoe in the east.
he park is subjected to the coastal equatorial climate marked by an average annual temperature of 26.4OC, a high humidity (80%) and a thermal amplitude that is practically nil. The average annual rainfall varies from 1800 to 2000 mm and is divided between two rainy seasons interspersed by two dry seasons. The relief of the zone is very little contrasted with generally hydromorphous soils on quaternary or young sands on marine sands, with, in places, important accumulations of peat. In raised areas, soils are sandy or sandy-clayey to muddy.
The vegetation of the islands belongs to the Coastal Sector of the Guinean Domain. In this sector, the diversity of the edaphic conditions and their evolution make that on a small surface, one meets a great complexity of vegetable groups. There is therefore no dominant climax, but a mosaic of edaphic groupings. However, at first glance, the vegetation consists mainly of mangroves (40%) at the edge of the islands and forests in the center with an often dense undergrowth.
The park's wildlife is diverse. Indeed, the mangrove creates a nutritive system essential for the reproduction of numerous species as aquatic asians. Like all coastal wetlands, the Ehotile Islands National Park is home to a remarkable birdlife. There were 128 bird species in 35 families. These are, for the most part, aquatic species whose number was estimated at 2583 in 2001. To the species of water are added, in the dry season, migratory species.
It should be noted that the park is also home to mammals that are traditionally subservient to the forest, such as duikers, bush pigs, rodents, etc. In addition to these animals, the Park is home to two species that give it its originality:
- The bat: an important colony of these megachiropteres of the species Heidolon helvurn or Flycatcher palms, lodge on Balouate Island. For the local populations these animals are the sign of the presence of the missing parents. They are therefore of great importance in the lives of these peoples.
- The manatee: (Trichechus senegalensis), aquatic mammal very representative of the Ivorian lagoons, but today strongly threatened with extinction.
For all these riches, the Ehotile Islands were ranked Ramsar Site (site n01584) on October 18, 2005.
The Aby Lagoon is bordered by the Ehotilé, Adounvlè and Essouma townships. Of these three cantons, only the Ehotilé and the Essouma claim the "paternity" of the islands of the park. The chief town of the canton, seat of the Ehotilé chiefdom is Etueboué, while Assinie is home to the Essouma chiefdom. The population bordering the park divided between 21 villages is officially estimated at 32,103 inhabitants, or 32% of the total population of the department.
Fishing is the main activity of the local riparian populations of the park. For centuries, they have practiced collective fishing in various forms. Fishing activity is practiced by men and women. The men take care of the fishing, the supply of firewood (mangrove wood, essentially) and the women take care of the smoking.
The crisis of water quality in Cote d'Ivoire is characterized by two key problems. First, many communities, especially rural ones, face difficulties not only accessing safe drinking water, but also accessing enough of it. ... Unsafe drinking water increases child mortality rates.Nov