© Brent Stirton/Getty Images for FAO, CIFOR, CIRAD, WCS


The Rupununi Savannah is teeming with wildlife, including a large variety of bird species. Fish and wildlife are an integral part of the indigenous culture and diet. Traditional hunting and fishing practices are still common, despite the availability of beef and imported chicken. On the Coast of Guyana, wild meat and fish from the interior, including the Rupununi, are available for sale in local markets, restaurants and private homes.

Threats to the Rupununi’s rich biodiversity are increasing as the area becomes more accessible and new economic activities take off. The SWM project in Guyana is encouraging coordinated community-driven initiatives that support food security and traditional livelihoods. These will contribute to maintaining healthy fish and terrestrial wildlife populations. It is being implemented by the Guyana Wildlife Conservation and Management Commission in coordination with CIFOR.


  • The SWM Programme is working closely with indigenous hunters and local conservationists to maintain healthy fish and mammal populations (watch Asaph’s video).  
  • In South Rupununi, wildlife use guidelines have been defined in 7 pilot communities and wildlife use surveys have been carried out in 140 households.
  • The SWM Programme has raised awareness about the fisheries management plan in 20 communities, collected data on fish consumption in 345 households and on river turtle consumption in 112 households, and is monitoring offtakes along 386 km of rivers (watch Vivian’s video).
  • In October 2020, the Rupununi Livestock Producers association had supplied 17 000 chicks to 12 farmers (4 females and 8 males) and 48 000 kg of feed.  
  • Every year, over 300 children from 14 communities participate in the environmental education curriculum developed by the SWM Programme.


Map of the SWM  activities in Guyana
The boundaries and names shown and the designations used on this map do not imply the expression of any opinion whatsoever on the part of FAO concerning the legal status of any country, territory, city or area or of its authorities, or concerning the delimitation of its frontiers and boundaries.



Legal, ecological and socio-economic baseline...

Yellow-spotted river turtle conservation programme...

© Nathalie van Vliet/CIFOR

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© Brent Stirton/Getty Images for...

Facts and Figures from inland fisheries in North...

© FAO/Samantha James

Wildlife use in Wapichan Wiizi

© Peter Smith

SWM Guyana newsletter - Issue 10