Efforts to Save the Sumatran Tiger Habitat Through the Mitigation Patrol Program and Stakeholder Participation
On going Project
Partner: Yayasan Rimba Satwa
Period: August 2019 - January 2020
Currently, the conflict between humans and Sumatran tigers is increasingly worrying. It is caused by forest conversions in Sumatra —the Sumatran Tiger's habitat, especially in Riau Province due to human acts such as land clearing for oil palm, illegal hunting, illegal mining, and infrastructure development.
As a result, the Sumatran tigers have lost much of their home range. As we know, tigers are explorers, and its roaming area is quite extensive. And because of their dwindling home range, the Sumatran tiger roaming areas that intersect with residential areas and community plantations are vulnerable to human-tiger conflicts.
Illegal hunting for illegal trade is also a scourge that we cannot avoid. Using snares, humans forcibly poach tigers for self-interests and rule out the aftermath; because of this, the Sumatran tiger population in the last few years has decreased.
The Belantara Foundation has taken the initiative to save and protect the habitat of Sumatran tiger wildlife together with the local Yayasan Rimba Satwa partner by conducting mitigation patrols in several areas in the Senepis grant area.
As of January 2020, an area of approximately 5,925 Ha has been patrolled, and more than 10 tiger markings have been found —footprints of roughly 12 cm, scratches, and scat. The patrol team also found several tiger threats; five signs of tiger threats were found in the areas, such as snares, burned land and 27 signs of flora and fauna such as wild pigs, monkeys, sun bears, etc.
As of December 2019, the patrols have been carried out for 12 days in the area of PT. Main Jaya Section (PT. RUJ) and in four villages (Jumrah Village, Pematang Sikek Village, Teluk Pulau Hulu Village, and Teluk Pulau Hilir Village), and have traveled 1,192.2 km and passed 168 discovery checkpoints. The patrol is carried out by a patrol team from a community group formed and accompanied by Yayasan Rimba Satwa.
In addition to patrol activities, we also carried out educational activities, namely "Conservation goes to school," which have been carried out five times in 2019. This activity was carried out in six schools in the villages of Basilam Baru and Jumrah, which are:
- Basiliam Baru 012 Elementary School involving 26 students and four teachers;
- Basiliam Baru 002 Public Elementary School, involving 30 students and four teachers;
- Jumrah 012 Public Elementary School, involving 46 students and four teachers;
- Jumrah 002 Public Elementary School, involving 30 students and 4 teachers;
- Jumrah 003 Melintang Public Elementary School involving 30 students; and
- MI Hubbul Wathan Rimba Melintang, Involving 37 students.
The purpose of this activity was to further educate and provide the students with knowledge of nature and the environment to increase their awareness of it. Educational activities carried out in this event used the learning while playing method for teaching. Students in the six schools were invited to play games and participate in quizzes about nature; also, ice-breaking activities were also held to help the students further to receive the lessons better and be capable of filling out the evaluation sheets with significant grades.
As one of the animals protected by the government, in collaboration with stakeholders, in the future, we will continue to conduct protection activities to preserve the Sumatran tiger's habitat or home range, so the human-tiger conflict does not continually occur.