Twelve endangered Sumatran tigers captured on film in Indonesian rainforest that is about to be cleared by loggers
Source: Daily Mail Reporter
Date: May, 09, 2011
- WWF has called for the logging in Bukit Tigapuluh forest to be cancelled
- Numbers of Sumatran tigers have dwindled to 400 from 1,000 in the 1970s
Footage of 12 endangered Sumatran tigers has been recorded in an Indonesian forest that is about to be cleared by loggers.
The giant cats are on the brink of extinction because of the destruction of forests, poaching and clashes with humans.
Their numbers have dwindled to about 400 today from 1,000 in the 1970s.
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Two of 12: A Sumatran tiger walks with its cub in the Bukit Tigapuluh forest on central Sumatra island in this image captured by conservationists using camera traps
The video was made by the World Wide Fund For Nature (WWF) and includes footage of a mother playing with her three cubs in the Bukit Tigapuluh forest on central Sumatra island.
Conservationists said capturing images of 12 tigers in such a short period of time is nothing short of astonishing.
The area has seen rampant deforestation for palm oil and paper plantations.
Karmila Parakkasi, leader of WWF's tiger research team in Sumatra, said the number of big cats seen in two months of observation was impressive.
'What's unclear is whether we found so many tigers because we're getting better at locating our cameras or because the tiger's habitat is shrinking so rapidly here that they are being forced into sharing smaller and smaller bits of forests,' he said.
Capturing images of 12 tigers in such a short period of time is nothing short of astonishing, the WWF said. The organisation has called for planned logging in the forest to be cancelled
Still images show six individual tigers and a mother with a cub, while the video shows footage of another mother and three young cubs playfully chasing a leaf.
WWF said Indonesia's government had pledged to protect this forest area, but it was inside a land concession belonging to a subsidiary of Indonesian paper firm Barito Timber Pacific. The firm was not immediately available for comment.
'As soon as pending permits are granted by the government, the company could clear the forest to supply the wood to Asia Pulp & Paper of Sinar Mas Group,' said WWF, adding that it and other environmental groups have opposed the clearance plan.
Endangered: The giant cats are on the brink of extinction because of the destruction of forests, poaching and clashes with humans
Indonesia agreed with Norway a two-year moratorium on new permits to clear forest, under a landmark $1billion deal to curb greenhouse gas emissions from deforestation, but it has yet to be signed into law as ministries wrangle over details.
The moratorium was expected to slow rapid industry expansion by the world's largest producer of palm oil, used to make everything from biscuits and soap to biodiesel and seeing growing demand from consumers in fast-growing Asia.
In the last 50 years, Indonesia has lost both the Bali tiger and Java tiger.