Sunday, June 19, 2011

More Than Half Of Borneo's Carnivores Face Extinction

KOTA KINABALU -- More than fifty percent of Borneo's many carnivore species could become extinct, according to the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) which lists them on its red list of threatened species.

In disclosing the findings, Sabah Wildlife Department (SWD) director Dr Laurentius Ambu said as such, there was a need for action plans and long-term solutions to the declining number of Borneo's carnivores.

Speaking at the launching of the 1st Borneo Carnivore Symposium, here, today, he said the need to strengthen knowledge was crucial in efforts to protect the 24 species of carnivores found in Borneo such as the amazing Sunda Clouded Leopard (Neofelis diardi), which is only found in Borneo.

"Last year, scientists even rediscovered the world's most endangered otter species here in Sabah at Dermakot (near Sandakan), so it's obvious we have to work harder to protect these amazing wildlife," he said.

The symposium, aimed at developing action plans to ensure the survival of the carnivores in Borneo, was attended by almost 200 scienties from 15 countries including Malaysia, Brunei and Indonesia.

"The conservation of carnivores is important because they are what we call the keystone species as their presence maintains a healthy ecosystem within the forests of Borneo," said Laurentius who was also the organising chairman of the Symposium.


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