We are so grateful to the Thin Green Line Foundation UK for their recent grant, which will enable us to train and equip more Wildlife Protection Units to protect wildlife in the Bukit Tigapuluh Ecosystem. This vast ecosystem, on the island of Sumatra, is one of the last remaining strongholds for three iconic Critically Endangered species - the Sumutran elephant, Sumatran orangutan and Sumatran tiger.
The 360,000 hectare Bukit Tigapuluh Ecosystem is a critically important conservation area and is one of only two Sumatran orangutan releases sites in the world. To date, over 170 ex-captive Sumatran orangutans have been released into this area. The ecosystem is also home to one of the largest existing populations of wild Sumatran elephants and sustains ten to fifteen percent of the remaining populations of wild Sumatran tigers.
First formed in 2014, our Wildlife Protection Units (WPU) are multi-task units that focus on habitat protection and monitoring, reducing poaching, monitoring wildlife, and reducing human-wildlife conflict. The goal of our WPUs is to conserve the Bukit Tigapuluh Ecosystem as a fully functional ecosystem, securing the future for the many species who rely on it for survival. One of the key roles they play is to identify and investigate illegal logging and forest encroachment, as you can see in the image below.
The Thin Green Line is a non-profit organisation dedicated to protecting wildlife by supporting rangers on the frontline of conservation. Their generous grant will make a significant difference to training for our Wildlife Protection Units, as well as providing new equipment they urgently need for their forest patrols.
Our work in Bukit Tigapuluh is a project run by our partner Frankfurt Zoological Society and the Indonesian Ministry of Forestry and Environment. You can see photos below of the Wildlife Protection Units hard at work, monitoring orangutans, trekking through the jungle, and taking notes of their monitoring.