Indonesia: Yellow-crested cockatoo on brink of extinction in West Nusa Tenggara

Panca Nugraha The Jakarta Post 20 Mar 17;

Habitat loss has pushed the critically endangered yellow-crested cockatoo (Cacatua Sulphurea), a native bird of Sulawesi and East Nusa Tenggara, toward the brink of extinction, as the number currently living in the wild continues to decline.

The International Union for the Conservation of Nature (IUCN) has listed the bird among 20 bird species that are on the brink of extinction, said Tri Endang, head of the Forest Ecosystem Control unit at the West Nusa Tenggara Natural Resources Conservation Agency (BKSDA).

“The IUCN has listed the Yellow-Crested cockatoo as critically endangered. It is only a step away from being extinct,” she said in Mataram, the capital city of West Nusa Tenggara, on Monday.

The population of the bird in the province was only 145, based on the BKSDA’s monitoring in 2016. In West Nusa Tenggara, the birds could only be found only in Sumbawa, with 115 found on Moyo Island in Sumbawa regency and the remaining 30 in the Jereweh conservation area in West Sumbawa.

The number of yellow-crested cockatoos in the neighboring province of East Nusa Tenggara is believed to be 200.

Endang explained that the bird population started to decline in the 1980s following rampant illegal wildlife trading.

“Now the population has been disrupted by habitat loss,” she said, adding that cockatoo populations do not recover rapidly as they lay only two eggs in a year.

Deer sanctuary to be built in West Nusa Tenggara
Panca Nugraha The Jakarta Post 20 Mar 17;

West Nusa Tenggara (NTB) plans to build a deer sanctuary this year to reverse the decline in the deer population.

NTB Natural Resources Conservation Agency (BKSDA) head Widada said on Monday that the planned 1.5-hectare sanctuary for the animal, which is the mascot of West Nusa Tenggara, will be located in Gunung Tunak Nature Park in Central Lombok.

“We will place 20 to 30 deer within the sanctuary,” Widada said, adding that the deer population in the province was no more than 2,000, scattered around Mount Rinjani, Mount Tambora, Moyo Island, the protected forests in Lombok and Sumbawa, and in breeding centers.

In 2005, the deer population reached 6,000 in Lombok and Sumbawa, he added.

Illegal hunting, climate change and habitat destruction were the reasons behind the decreasing number, said Widada.

The BKSDA coordinator for forest ecosystem control, Tri Endang, said the ecosystem of the deer sanctuary would be made similar to that of their natural habitat.

“Hopefully they will breed well within the sanctuary,” said Tri, adding that the deer reproduction cycle was one year.

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