They managed to survey over 200 sites throughout Iraq and assess the ecosystems and habitats in each site they visited, in the process becoming the only reliable source of information on biodiversity in Iraq. They were also able to discover plants new to science and vastly improve available records of the ranges and breeding patterns of birds for the country. They also registered the first ever documented evidence of the existence of the rare and elusive Persian leopard in the country. Despite there being proof of the existence of the leopard in the mountains of the Kurdistan region, there is no tangible documentation of its exact occurrence. Hana now means to lay the groundwork for the conservation of the Persian leopard, which is the only remaining top predator roaming these mountains today.
This project represents the first stepping-stone towards a transnational Persian leopard protection endeavour with Iran. Besides, she sees this award as a great opportunity to have a positive impact on the conservation front in Iraq.
See the list of the nominees: http://futurefornature.org/nominees-2017/