Friday, June 11, 2010

Help needed in saving Sabah's rhinos

KOTA KINABALU: Leaving Sabah’s remaining less than 50 Sumatran rhinos to fend for themselves in the wild appears to be no longer an option in ensuring the species’ survival.

State Wildlife Department director Laurentius Ambu said the establishment of forest corridors to connect Sabah’s remaining fragmented jungles thus allowing the movement of wildlife would no longer be of help to the rhinos.

“The rhinos now need a different concentrated effort that is being carried out in Tabin,” he said when launching a workshop on Species Action Plans for Sabah’s iconic wildlife - the orang utan, elephant and rhinos.

Laurentius was referring to efforts in protecting and encouraging the breeding of Sumatran rhinos at the 4,500ha Borneo Rhino Sanctuary (BRS) at the Tabin Wildlife Reserve in Sabah’s east coast Lahad Datu district.

His remarks came a day after the department said it was planning to translocate a female rhino photographed by a camera trap two weeks ago to the BRS in Tabin in hopes that it would eventually mate with a male named Tam captured two years ago.

Meanwhile, Laurentius said the Species Action Plans were needed for immediate and practical conservation actions to ensure long-term survival of the species that were “continously diminishing” in numbers.

He said there was an estimated 40 Sumatran rhinos left in Sabah, another 2,000 Borneo pygmy elephants and 11,000 orang utan - a drop of about 50% over the past 50 years.

Continue reading at: Help needed in saving Sabah's rhinos

No comments: