GOMBE, Tanzania — On the eastern shores of Lake Tanganyika, 16 kilometers (10 miles) north of the town of Kigoma in Tanzania, lies the green, dense forest of Gombe National Park. Made famous by British primatologist Jane Goodall’s decades-long research on the park’s resident chimpanzees, Gombe, at 52 square kilometers (20 square miles), is among the smallest parks in Tanzania.
The park doesn’t have a perimeter fence surrounding it. This has allowed chimpanzees to move in and out freely, following age-old forest corridors that connect their core habitats. Since the late 1990s, many of these corridors have, however, been cleared for charcoal, timber, settlements and farming, which has resulted in increased human-chimpanzee conflict and declining chimpanzee numbers.