A veterinarian provides initial treatment to the injured Philippine Eagle.

Philippines: DENR chief lauds regional office for saving injured Eagle
By Jonathan L. Mayuga, 30th December 2017;

Environment Secretary Roy A. Cimatu recently lauded the field personnel of the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR)-Caraga Region Office for saving the life of an injured Philippine Eagle (Pithecophaga jefferyi) in Tago town, Surigao del Sur province, on December 10.

The members of the DENR-Caraga enforcement division acted with dispatch and provided initial treatment to the raptor after receiving a report of the rescued Eagle’s condition.

The Philippine Eagle, the Philippines’ national bird, is the largest bird of prey in the world and it is endemic to the Philippines. It can be found in four major islands namely, Eastern Luzon, Samar, Leyte and Mindanao.

The DENR-Biodiversity Management Bureau believes there are less than 400 pairs of breeding Eagle left in the wild although there are recent reports of sightings of juvenile Eagles mostly in Mindanao.

Habitat loss, hunting for food and trophy and illegal wildlife trade are among the reasons for the species’ population decline.

The rescued Eagle was suffering from a broken wing, a potentially fatal injury, after when rescued by residents in the mountainous village of Anahao Daan, it was learned.

“This proves that the DENR personnel even in the local field offices are vigilant in caring and protecting our precious wildlife treasures, such as the Philippine Eagle,” Cimatu said in a statement. The Eagle is now being treated at the Philippine Eagle Center (PEC) in Davao City. The PEC is a conservation breeding facility operated by the Philippine Eagle Foundation.

DENR-Caraga Officer in Charge Director Charlie Fabre said the raptor was turned over to the PEC, a day after it was rescued.

He said the bird’s cartilage bone on its left wing had to be cut off “to save its life.”

According to Forester Modesto Lagumbay, chief of the local enforcement and wildlife division, residents found the 4-kilogram Eagle limping along the riverbank and turned it over to Barangay Chairman Datu Aralito Enriquez.

Enriquez brought the Eagle to Mayor Rogelio Pimentel, from whom the DENR team retrieved the raptor.

The wounded Eagle had to be brought fast to an Eagle sanctuary in Davao City, where the veterinarian had immediately performed a surgery on it, Lagumbay said.

“Most likely, the Eagle must have been caught from a snare and struggled to get free and wounded its wing in the process,” Lagumbay added. The Eagle, estimated to be around two years old, will be released once it has fully recovered from injury.

Source: Business Mirror

Photo: Detik.com

Indonesia: Four Sumatran Elephants died in Riau in 2016: WWF
3rd January 2017;

The World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF) has said that four Sumatran Elephants (Elephas maximus sumatranus) died in 2016 in Riau Province, a decline from the previous year.

“In 2015, there were 10 cases of dead Elephants, while in 2016, the number decreased to four,” Spokesperson of WWF of the Riau Program Syamsidar said here on Tuesday.

The four deaths are believed to have occurred due to conflict between humans and wild animals.

Last year, the Tesso Nilo National Park Authority found the carcass of a Sumatran Elephant in Pelalawan District.

They also found a Sumatran Elephant snared in an industrial forest concession. The animal did not survive despite treatment.

In September last year, an Elephant calf was found trapped in a ditch in an industrial forest concession with wounds all over its body.

“An Elephant also died after being electrocuted in Duri region, near a residential area,” Syamsidar said.

No suspects were either identified or arrested in these cases, Syamsidar said.

WWF, an international non-governmental organization in the field of the wilderness preservation, and the reduction of humanitys footprint on the environment, estimated there were around 100 Sumatran elephants living in the Sumatran habitat.

As the landscapes and the habitats make way for industry and residential areas, wildlife is facing greater challenges for survival.

Although conflict between humans and wildlife is inevitable, Syamsidar said that the local authority and several private enterprises, which have forest concessions in Riau, have been working together to prevent and mitigate the conflict.

Only three private enterprises, PT Riau Andalan Pulp and Paper (RAPP), Asian Agri and PT Musim Mas, have been involved in this effort by adopting the human-wildlife conflict mitigation system being implemented by the WWF and Natural Resource Conservation Agency (BKSDA) of Riau.

RAPP has established a so-called flying squad, consisting of at least four grown Elephants and two calves, whose task is to conduct patrols around the concession area to avert human-wildlife conflict as well as prevent Elephant herds trespassing into residential areas or villages.

Asian Agri has a similar program but they conduct patrolling without using Elephants, Syamsidar said.

“They perform the patrol manually, without any Elephants, but still adopt the measures used by the WWF, such as using a carbide cannon,” he said.

PT Musim Mas, however, is committed to provide financial support for the program, Syamsidar said.

Source: Antara

Photo: Ecoria

Indonesia: Dead Sun Bear found in Lampung, body parts likely stolen for black market trade
By Feriawan Hidayat & Ratri M. Siniwi, 28th December 2016;

A Sun Bear (Helarctos malayanus) was found dead at Bukit Barisan Selatan National Park’s Tambling Wildlife Nature Conservation Center in Talangsimpang, Lampung.

The national park security patrol team found the Bear’s carcass near the park borders in Sugi Sane village earlier this month.

“We found the Bear’s chest cut open, indicating the perpetrator took its enzyme-rich gallbladder intending to sell it,” Ketut, the national park’s security patrol representative, said in a statement on Tuesday (27/12).

Ketut explained that the Bear was likely tortured before its death as it was initially trapped by a sling iron. The perpetrator then appeared to have pulled out all of its teeth and claws with force. This was to get the Bear’s adrenaline flowing, which in turn makes its bile sac enlarge.

“The Bear was tortured to extract its enzymes. We suspect that the enzymes would then be sold on the black market, where they are worth millions,” Ketut added.

The national park’s security patrol team found that the offender also took the Bear’s teeth and claws to be sold illegally.

Poaching is rampant in the national park. Our team often finds abandoned animal carcasses, the result of hunting in the area,“ the officer stated. The team previously found several Porcupine (F. Hystricidae) and Mousedeer (Tragulus spp.) carcasses, as well as Deer (F. Cervidae) legs, which were discarded after their meat was taken by hunters.

The Bear carcass discovery proves that hunting protected animals is becoming too common and increased action and attention from law enforcement is needed to prevent this.

Sun Bears are protected under Indonesian law and are listed as "vulnerable” in the International Union for Conservation of Nature’s Red List of Endangered Animals.

Source: Jakarta Globe

Rescue work: Volunteers medically treat two Sumatran Elephants whose legs were injured by a steel trap in Pancasila hamlet, Sei Lepan district, Langkat North Sumatra, on Monday. The Elephants freed themselves after four days of being snared by the mechanism.
Photo: Apriadi Gunawan

Indonesia: Young Elephants free themselves from trap
By Apriadi Gunawan, 22nd November 2016;

After being trapped in a steel snare for four days, two wild Sumatran Elephants (Elephas maximus sumatranus) in the Mount Leuser National Park (TNGL) managed to free themselves from the trap, although their legs were severely injured and infected.

The mammals were trapped in a community-owned oil palm plantation in Sei Lepan district, Langkat regency, North Sumatra.

Garendel Siboro, head of technical affairs at the North Sumatra Natural Resources Conservation Agency (BKSDA), said both of the Elephants were females.

Garendel added that they were considered relatively young, with the smaller one believed to be approximately eight years of age and the larger one estimated at 10 years.

The acting team leader of the Elephant rescue operation said his office had received a report about two Elephants caught in a trap set by local residents, but only after the animals had already managed to free themselves from the legholds, with their injured legs still entangled in steel cables.

Garendel said the BKSDA then dispatched a team including volunteers from several NGOs to look for the Elephants. They were found in a critical state at the plantation in Sei Lepan on Friday.

The BKSDA enlisted the help of two veterinarians to remove the cables, which are as thick as a finger, from the Elephants’ legs.

Citing the report from villagers, Garendel said residents had been afraid to approach the animals, because their mother, approximately 20 years old, had been watching closely.

Garendel added that before being trapped, the two young Elephants had been with their mother in search of food on the plantation, in a herd with 11 more Elephants. Along the way, Garendel said, the two young Elephants were caught in traps deliberately built by farmers concerned about the large number of Elephants near their plantation.

The official explained that the wild Elephants had been forced out of their habitat in the TNGL area because their natural surroundings had been damaged by rampant illegal logging and the expansion of oil palm plantations.

“Many sections of the TNGL buffer zone area have been converted to oil palm plantation. As a result, Elephants have lost their habitat and are forced to seek food outside of their habitat,” said Garendel.

North Sumatra BKSDA Conservation Section head Herbert Aritonang said the condition of the two injured Elephants was improving after they received treatment from the vet team.

The Elephants are now entrusted to a privately owned plantation until they recover and are able to walk normally.

“If they have fully recovered and able to walk normally, then we will release and escort them to their herd to meet the other Elephants,” said Herbert.

Source: Jakarta Post

  • The injured Elephant calf plays with a veterinarian at Khao Ang Rue Nai Wildlife Sanctuary in Tha Takiab district in Chachoengsao on Thursday.
  • The wounds of the baby Elephant to his front left leg.

Photo: Khao Ang Rue Nai Wildlife Sanctuary Facebook

Thailand: Injured baby elephant saved from trap, needs a mother
By Apinya Wipatayotin & Saritdet Marukatat, 20th October 2016;

An injured baby Asian Elephant (Elephas maximus) has been saved from hunters by Chanthaburi villagers and forestry officials are now looking for an adopted mother for him.

The three-month-old beast’s front left leg was hurt by a trap when Moo 12 village chief Wandee Dokdin and four other villagers found the animal in weak condition in a jungle in Khaeng Hang Maew district in Chanthaburi on Wednesday night.

They led the baby Elephant from the forest, put it on a pickup truck and took it to a wildlife office in Tha Takiab district in Chachoengsao in the early hours of Thursday. Veterinarians from Khao Ang Rue Nai Wildlife Sanctuary were sent to the office to treat its wounds.

Decha Nilvichian, chief of Khao Ang Rue Nai Wildlife Sanctuary, said the calf was saved and its health was improving after vets fed it baby milk after medical treatment.

“Judging from the wounds, his leg could have been trapped for about three days,” Mr Decha said. “His weight is about 100 kilogrammes.”

The calf will stay at the sanctuary for more treatment with vets taking care of him around the clock.

“What we are worrying about is that he needs to be fed naturally,” the official said.

Khao Ang Rue Nai Wildlife Sanctuary is contacting other Elephant centres across the country to find out whether they have a female Elephant ready to feed a baby.

“We have to find an Elephant to feed him,” Mr Decha added.

Source: Bangkok Post

Graphic images of a dead Malayan Tiger being dismembered, which had been making its round on social media since yesterday, have left netizens reeling in shock and disgust. Wildlife and National Parks Department (Perhilitan) Enforcement Acting Director, Rozidan Md Yasin told NST Online that initial information gathered suggests that the incident took place in Pahang.

Malaysia: Viral images of butchered Tiger may have come from Pahang
By James Sivalingam, 15th October 2016;

Graphic images of a dead Malayan Tiger (Panthera tigris jacksoni) being dismembered, which had been making its round on social media since yesterday, have left netizens reeling in shock and disgust.

The images show several men posing for pictures with the Tiger’s carcass. One of the images also shows the tiger’s belly being slit open.

While the origin of the pictures remain unconfirmed, the authorities believe that the poaching activity may indeed have taken place in Malaysia.

Wildlife and National Parks Department (Perhilitan) Enforcement Acting Director, Rozidan Md Yasin told NST Online that initial information gathered suggests that the incident took place in Pahang.

“Investigations are ongoing and at this stage, it is difficult to confirm the location and when it took place,” he said.

Malaysian Nature Society President Henry Goh, yesterday told a local portal that the Tiger was killed with a snare trap, commonly used by the Orang Asli community.

Wildlife poachers, he said, have begun enlisting the Orang Asli community to hunt Malaysian wildlife for them.

“The poachers will give a bit of money to the Orang Asli to kill the animals. In return, they make thousands in US dollars by selling the skins and other organs on the underground international market,” he was quoted as saying.

The existence of this practice was confirmed by Rozidan.

“Yes, it does happen. The rural communities, especially the Orang Asli, are often ‘used’ by unscrupulous parties for their own interest,” he said.

In the wake of this incident, Rozidan assured the public that Perhilitan is stepping up its surveillance in relevant areas.

He urged members of public who may have more information to come forward to assist investigations.

Malayan Tigers are classified as ‘critically endangered’ by the International Union for Conservation of Nature. It is estimated that there are less than 350 in existence.

The species is protected under the Protection of Wildlife Act 2010, which carries a maximum five-year jail term and a RM500,000 fine on offenders.

Meanwhile, Kanitha Krishnasamy of TRAFFIC Southeast Asia (TRAFFIC), an international wildlife trade monitoring network, said poaching and illegal trade pose an urgent threat that does maximum damage in a short time.

The Tiger population, she said, has dwindled in many parts of their former habitat due to illegal hunting, mainly for their skin, bones and other body parts.

“It’s a worrying concern because we don’t have as many Tigers as we thought we had.

"Malayan Tigers are critically endangered, which means we’re one step away from it being extinct in the wild,” warned Kanitha.

Source: New Straits Times

These two images have gone viral on social media and messaging apps.

Malaysia: Perhilitan investigating viral pix of people with dead Tiger
By Simon Khoo, 14th October 2016;

The Wildlife and National Parks Department (Perhilitan) is investigating images of several individuals posing next to a dead Tiger (Panthera tigris jacksoni) that have gone viral on social media.

“We take a serious view of this matter and have ordered a probe to be carried out to check the authenticity of the images,” said Perhilitan director-general Abdul Kadir Abu Hashim.

“Investigations into the case will be done under Section 68(2)© of the Wildlife Protection Act 2010 for hunting Tigers without a special permit,” he said in a statement to The Star Friday evening.

The offence carries a jail term of up to five years and a maximum fine of RM500,000, upon conviction.

Abdul Kadir said his officers were now going all-out to track down those responsible and verify the exact location where the photo was taken.

Tigers are a protected species and it is illegal to kill or maim them, unless in a life-threatening situation.

He urged those with information on the case to call the Perhilitan hotline at 1-800-88-5151 (8am to 6pm) or to file a report on its website at www.wildlife.gov.my.

Source: The Star