Friday, September 12, 2008

a Journey to Borneo #6

The last population of Hosei monkey

After 20 days we didnt found any hosei monkeys in Kutai National Park (KNP), we continue survey to nort-east, five hour from KNP, where the last previous survey found this hosei monkey in this areas. There are two rivers here flowing down to Sangkulirang bay from Karst mountain as water cathment, i.e Karangan and Baai. Four hours trip from Sangata and connected by speed boat (1.5 hour) we arrived at Pengadan village (it will be my basecamp for the next 10 remaining days). Previous scientific expedition in this region conducted to reveal some archaeological study and speleology investigation.(see at this link : http://www.kalimanthrope.com/2000/GB/project1.html) thus pengadan villagers are familiar with researcher and their activities. We found a good local guide here to conduct boat survey. Pessimistic feeling during survey in Baai and Sangkulirang rivers to find the monkey, because of no forested habitat remains, palm oil has become “a new hope”, land cleared and prepared for massive palm oil field,no bodies care about biological richness and its ecological function. We still found very rare of orangutan, bekantan, beruk and warek (longtailed macaque) lived in very thin vegetation in the river sides, in the contrary we seen these primates lived in the cage, captured by villagers.The last 10 days in Sangkulirang area, we just only found a group of hosei monkey, entrapped between early years of palm oil field. This group couldn't extent their habitat due to human disturbances, and their habitat already totally converted. A group that we have found probably had serious problem to survive, although they may be able to adapt and move to the ground, people will sometimes capture them for their stone or consider them as pest or crop-raider in palm oil agriculture, where as habitat lost are conspicuous in majority these area.

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