Indonesia: Riau farmer injured after fighting off sun bears

Rizal Harahap The Jakarta Post 16 Apr 18;

Dasril, 50, a farmer from Lubuk Ulat hamlet in Rokan Hulu regency, Riau, injured his thigh after fighting off two sun bears on Sunday.

Rokan Hulu Police chief Sr. Adj. Comr. Hasyim Risahondua said the farmer was attacked by the bears on Sunday while on his way to a rubber plantation where he worked, about three kilometers away from the hamlet.

“He was going to the plantation on foot. After walking for two kilometers, he heard the sound of an animal roar and suddenly two bears appeared in front of him,” Hasyim said Monday.

Dasril said a bear about 1.5 meters high attacked him, so he defended himself using a machete, eventually hurting the bear’s head and back. The bear ran away and was hiding in the bushes when a second bear appeared and mauled his left thigh. Dasril screamed until the bear eventually let him go and left.

“[Dasril] struggled to return home using a piece of wood to support him. After one kilometer, he couldn’t take it any longer and stopped. He was found by two local men who then walked him home,” Hasyim said, adding that Dasril was then rushed to a local hospital for surgery.

Dasril’s son Rio Andri asked the local natural resources conservation agency to capture the bears over fear of repeated attacks. (swd)