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Introducing Sumatra...

Indonesia is the largest cluster of islands in the world, consisting of five major islands and about 30 smaller groups. Sumatra is the largest Indonesian Island and the 6th largest island in the world at approximately 470,000 square km, which is approximately twice the size of The United Kingdom.

Sumatra is one of the most biologically diverse areas in the world, home to a unique and wide variety of species and ecosystems. Just 100 years ago most of Sumatra was covered in primary forest (marked in red) and tigers roamed all over the island. Now it is estimated that only 20% of its lowland forests remain. It is the natural home to the world’s last remaining 400 Sumatran Tigers, now classed as a critically endangered species.

Much of the Focus of the Programme centres around 3 areas:

Way Kambas National Park
Way Kambas National Park is approximately 1,300 km² of lowland forest situated on the coast of Lampung province in Southern Sumatra. The park is almost entirely flat. It was originally established as a wildlife reserve in 1937, but after a period of intensive logging the park was finally declared to be a national park in 1997, which gives it some protection.

Tiger conservation work has been carried out in this park since 1995 and this is therefore our most established base. We have installed over 15 cameras, (10 of which can produce video footage) which have provided us with extremely rare footage of animals such as Golden Cat, which has only ever been filmed twice before!
Due to our long term monitoring at WKNP, we estimate that the park is home to over 45 species of animals, including approximately 40 Sumatran tigers, 20 Sumatran Rhinoceros, (previously thought to be extinct within the park but re-discovered by this project) 300 Sumatran Elephants, Tapir and the Honey Bear.

Camera monitoring has shown us that tigers tend to stay in the centre of WKNP and are very rarely seen in the north or south of the park. We have also learnt that the tigers prey; wild pigs, deers and monkeys are in abundance which means that there is little reason for the tigers to stray into villages looking for food.  For more info and photos from Way Kambas follow the links on the left...

Bukit Tigapuluh National Park
Bukit Tigapuluh means “The Thirty Hills” and this accurately describes the terrain. This park is situated in Eastern Sumatra and is roughly the same size as Way Kambas.
Bukit Tigapuluh is the most important area of remaining lowland forest on Sumatra. These forests represent the biologically richest habitat on earth, and one of the most threatened. Lowland forests are under severe threat from agricultural encroachment as well as plantation and timber enterprises all over Indonesia. The park is a safe haven for thousands of species of plants and animals, many of which are threatened by extinction or are extremely rare. To date 660 plant species have been recorded, 192 species of birds, 98 species of fish and 59 species of mammals, including the Malaysian Tapir, Asian Elephants, Gibbons, Macaques and around 25 Sumatran Tigers.

At BTNP we carry out tiger and forest protection and this site is also the base for the two schools funded by this project. For more info and photos from BTNP follow the links on the left...

Senepis-Buluhala Tiger Conservation Area.
In 2000, we were asked to capture and relocate a tiger that had roamed into a village near Dumai. We learned that a 15 km2 strip of forest was being cleared, which was pushing the tigers closer to the villages in their search for food. As a direct result of the forest being cleared, 8 tigers were seen in villages and 3 people were killed.
We quickly realised that this was not an isolated incident and we decided to stay in Dumai to assist with the human-tiger conflict issues. After 3 years of negotiation with provincial and central Indonesian Governments, The Senepis-Buluhala Tiger Conservation Area was approved. On 3rd January 2003, the honourable M.S. Kaban, The Indonesian Minister of Forestry, approved the creation of a peat swamp forest conservation area, specifically for the conservation of the Sumatran Tiger, close to the city of Dumai in Riau Province.
The 1060 km2 reserve is situated in a forest area between the Senepis and Buluhala rivers making it ideal habitat for Sumatran Tigers and its prey.
It is estimated that the core tiger conservation area will be capable of supporting up to 36 adult tigers, providing that forest destruction, poaching and human-tiger conflict can be minimised.

We are still trying to get this area a National Park status which affords the forest more protection than it currently has, as the area is still privately owned and if they wanted to they could sanction further forest clearings which would be disastrous for this island’s wildlife. For more info and photos from Senepis follow the links on the left...

Conflict Tiger Relocation is just one area in which the project works with local communities and tigers to restore harmony.  This wild Sumatran tiger, was captured by Patrol Rangers of The Sumatran Tiger Trust after local villagers contacted them reporting a tiger visiting their village, this tiger was relocated to Senepis Buluhala Tiger Conservation Area to continue to live as a wild free tiger.



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Last Updated: 25/02/2013