Malaysia: Search for elusive sun bear

New Straits Times 21 Feb 12;

JERANTUT: The state Wildlife and National Parks Department (Perhilitan) has intensified efforts to catch a sun bear in Felda Gelanggi 2 near here as it could shed light on one of the animals found dead in the area last week.

State Perhilitan director Khairiah Mohd Shariff said not much information could be derived from the dead bear as its carcass was highly decomposed.

She said it was difficult to confirm the cause of death or sex of the dead bear.

"Earlier reports show that they are a pair but we have yet to catch the other animal although a trap has been set in the area."

The carcass of the sun bear was discovered by two Felda settlers in their oil palm smallholding in Felda Gelanggi 2 on Feb 13.

Baba Madon, 65, and Shaharuddin Shamsuddin, 40, had a week earlier chanced upon the pair of rare bears when harvesting oil palm fruits.

Baba said one of the bears had fallen into a ditch in the smallholding and it looked like it was pregnant.

He said the skinny bear managed to crawl out of the ditch before moving into the jungle.

Perhilitan said the population of the totally-protected species had been declining steadily.