Located a few kilometers from Duékoué, the Mont Péko National Park occupies an area of 34,000 ha in the west of the Ivory Coast.
It is one of the 8 national parks in the country and it takes its name from Mount Péko which culminates at more than 1000 m. It is one of the most beautiful parks in the country.
It is renowned for its vegetation (flora of mountains and primary forest).
With an equatorial climate, hot and humid all year round, the park as a whole belongs to the watershed of the Sassandra River. On the middle course of the river, from Buyo to the Man-Séguela road bridge, the forest cover remains exceptional on the left bank of the river, with the classified forest of Haut-Sassandra.
Despite the small size of the park and its encirclement by village lands, the presence of wildlife still rich in species in the park (including large mammals such as the elephant) seems to show that poaching has remained practiced and “controlled” by indigenous populations, for local consumption.
The park has a large and varied fauna, including elephants, panthers, buffaloes, duikers, monkeys, etc. Access to the park is provided by several tracks.
The park has a number of assets with its impressive and relatively easy-to-access inselberg.
A census by Herbinger and Lia (unpublished report 2001a) confirmed the presence of a significant population of chimpanzees (Pan troglodytes verus).
The census predicted a density of 1.6 chimpanzees per km2 and estimated a total population of about 320 weaned chimpanzees.
This is much higher than the previous density estimate reported by Marchesi (1995) of 0.4 chimpanzees per km2 which gave an estimate of the total population size of 78 chimpanzees.
The classified forest of Haut Sassandra which is linked to Mont Péko by corridors could still shelter up to 400 chimpanzees (Hoppe-Dominik 1991).