Wednesday, October 17, 2007

Kelantan still notorious for wildlife smuggling

After trailing for SIX hours, a smuggler could easily jump off and ROW a boat across a river and escape! This can only happen in Bolehland!!! Read the story below.

From The Star
Wednesday October 17, 2007
Kelantan still notorious for wildlife smuggling

KOTA BARU: Kelantan continues to be a hotspot for wildlife trafficking despite various efforts to smash syndicates smuggling out protected and exotic species.

The conclusion was reached after an anti-smuggling unit recently thwarted an attempt to smuggle out the carcass of a two-year-old female black panther at the border township of Rantau Panjang, 50km from here.

Wildlife enforcement officials accompanied by the anti-smuggling team trailed a suspected smuggler for six hours last Thursday near the township before intercepting his car at about 5pm.

The suspect abandoned his car, jumped into a boat and rowed through Sungai Golok to reach the Thai side.

A state Wildlife and National Parks Department spokesman confirmed that the panther, worth an estimated RM16,000, was the work of a syndicate and investigations were underway to nab the culprits.

The carcass is currently stored at the department’s office as part of the investigation and it is believed that the protected species was killed in a Kuala Krai forest.

According to Traffic South East Asia (Wildlife Trade Monitoring Network) senior programming officer Chris Shepherd, the porous boundary conditions are ideal grounds for organised smuggling of wildlife, notably leopards, tigers, pangolins and freshwater turtles.

Malaysia as a member of Asean, is increasingly under threat from transboundary smuggling and the resulting effect is dwindling numbers of protected species and exotic animals, Shepherd said.

“The entire region is facing increasing pressure from wildlife smuggling. Enforcement authorities are struggling to keep abreast of the tactics of organised wildlife smugglers.
“What has been detected is only the tip of the iceberg,” he said.

Kelantan is a traditional smugglers den and it is also a top transit route used by wildlife smugglers to send across shipments to Thailand and China where the black panther is destined for the cooking pot.

To make matters worse, Malaysians are increasingly fond of exotic animal meat.
Despite the presence of wildlife conservationist groups such as World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF-Malaysia) and various campaigns here, the state continues to be notorious for wildlife smuggling.

Monday, October 08, 2007

Penang Hill - The Consequences

While we are free to choose our actions, we are not free to choose the consequences of our actions - Stephen R. Covey

In nature there are neither rewards nor punishments; there are consequences - Robert Green Ingersoll

Anything you build on a large scale or with intense passion invites chaos - Francis Ford Coppola

Consequences are unpitying - George Eliot

You can do anything in this world if you are prepared to take the consequences - William Somerset Maugham

It's a different ball game these days, but you're never going to get rid of corruption as long as there's power and money - Bryan Brown

"It's Built On Private Land"

Moniot Road is named after a Frenchman, Michel Jules Moniot, who surveyed it between 1846 and 1855. Penang Hill has been a popular holiday retreat for the Mat Sallehs. Before the furnicular train (and later the Jeep Road), the only access up the hill was by horseback or by sedan chairs carried by coolies through Moniot Road. Later, the road was then tarred but then it was only for horse drawn carriages. It was abandoned when furnicular train was servicable in 1926.
This part of Moniot Road has always be a motorcycle lane since I came to know the trail in 1985. This road could not be suitable for modern day vehicles. Suddenly, sometime in Aug 2007, it was bulldozed. Picture below.

"It's built on private land", they said. How to believe if there is a signboard to prove otherwise?
Aug 2007

Oct 2007 - then they cemented it.

The Consequences You See Today

This tree is counting its day... if not for the Forest Reserve signboard, this tree would have long gone....
More consequences of building steep road on hilly terrain in my next chapter. When are they going to learn?

Saturday, October 06, 2007

Capitalism IS Wastage

Don't get me wrong. I am not a socialist or a communist. I love freedom of speech. I love the environment. But our "materialism" and "consumerism" are getting us into deep shit of environmental disasters. Lets ponder over what Ben O'Neill said:

There was a time when the advocates of socialism argued that it would lead man to material abundance, whereas free-market capitalism would lead only to increasing misery and would ultimately collapse under its own internal stresses. You don't hear that too much these days, and for good reason. A century of empirical evidence has shown the contrary — that the free market leads to increasing wealth and material freedom, while socialism leads us only to poverty, state supremacy, and ultimately, mass murder.

These days the attack has shifted. Capitalism does not lead us to poverty; it leads us to too much wealth. This makes us "greedy" and "materialistic." It leads us to excessive "consumerism."

- Ben O'Neill in his article "Does Capitalism Make Us More Materialistic?" Quote and cartoon from

Excessive consumerism means wastage. Companies need to sell as much as possible. Stakeholders want to profit to the maximum. Citizens want to live with all the material goods.
Every year, you read about extraordinary profits by big corporations. More profits, more projects. More projects, more development. More development, more land needed... and so more trees cut, more pollution, more floodings and eventually disaster after disaster. Corporations rarely think about environment. They think about profit. They want more. They will do whatever necessary even to the extend of destroying nature for an extra dollar.

Do we need Capitalism in this fragile environment?

Tuesday, October 02, 2007

Koel in Kiasuland

Since when do the singing of birds annoy anyone?

Apparently there are still people in Kiasuland who think that when they stay at a place called Pasir Ris, that place is his – any bird that sing around that area should be a nuisance.

An asshole just has such stupidity. Did he know that the birds were living there long before him or his great grandfather? The birds have more right than that asshole. Just because the birds do not pay taxes while that asshole does, did not give him the right to have the singing terminated!

The singing bird is called Koel. A black bird with fiery red eyes. It has a part in our ecosystem. If there are crows, there will be Koels. They control the population of crows. They will kick out the crow’s eggs and replace with their own. The mother crow will nurse the Koel’s chicks like her own. Isn’t that a wonderful way of nature to control crows?

So, if you kill the Koels – the consequences – more crows!
So, if you want to get rid of the “lousy singing” Koels then you should keep your compound clean! No crows, no Koels. It’s that simple!

Probably because that asshole pays big taxes and talk loud, the council people could chop down the tree…as killing of birds will be inhumane. Well, I don’t know what will happen next. Let’s wait and see.

Oh, in Bolehland, I guess the Koel would be catapulted to death. That is Bolehland!

Read the story from the Electric New Paper:

"I AM a resident of Pasir Ris.

Since early August, there has been a bird singing loudly in a tree near my flat on Street 52 between 5.45am to 6.30am every day.

I called Pasir Ris Town council in mid-August explaining that the bird is disturbing my sleep.

They promised to investigate.

For the next six weeks, I made about five calls to the town council, including asking to talk to the general manager.

But all I got was the response that they would investigate and someone would call me back.

For that six weeks, I was forced to wake up at 6am - even on Saturdays and Sundays, days that I do not work.

Six weeks later, the town council came back to me with this: that the bird making the sound is a bird called 'koel'.

It also said that the bird is on the tree which happens to fall into the jurisdiction of either the Public Utilities Board or the National Environment Agency.So it will get the relevant agency to give me a call.

What I don't understand is why it took six weeks to come back to me on something that can be accomplished in two hours.

What is the use of telling me the type of bird?

Does the problem go away for me if the tree falls under the PUB or NEA jurisdiction?

I woke up at 6am over the weekend on Saturday and wrote this letter.Each month, I receive a conservation fee statement from my town council for monthly payments, and I have been paying it every month.

Each year, I fill my tax forms, and understand that some of the tax money I pay is channelled towards the public service including the town councils.

I was told that if I do not fulfil such payments, I will be jailed or fined heavily.

But if I do pay, it seems there is no guarantee that the payment will be used to hire public servants who can solve problems or at least empathise with me".

Poaching In Kiasuland

I would like to share with you our neighbour seriousness on poaching by Sheralyn Tay. Can Bolehland be as tough?

NParks gets tough as poaching is on the rise here
By Sheralyn Tay
USING one bird as bait, Masod bin Mohamed had hoped to lure and catchmore, but the 33-year-old was nabbed in February by the authoritiesinstead. Masod was arrested at the Mayflower Crescent playground by a NationalParks Board (NParks) ranger and, on Sept 11, became the first person hereto be charged and convicted of poaching, in a magistrate's court. He wasslapped with the maximum penalty - a fine of $2,000.

Wildlife experts here say that Masod's case is not an isolated one. Animal activists believe poaching is a problem as wildlife numbers arediminishing.

But the authorities are getting tough.

Since 2000, NParks have issued compound fines to more than 300 people forcapturing fishes and animals in parks and nature reserves. Compound finesare meted on the spot, like parking fines.

In August, the Agri-food and Veterinary Authority (AVA) - for the firsttime - fined a poacher $500 for trapping birds in Changi.

Masod's conviction is a signal that they take a firm stand against against trapping, especially when it is for personal gain, said Ms Sharon Chan, NParks' assistant director of the central nature reserve.

"Much effort has been put into conserving our natural heritage for the public to enjoy and to make Singapore a unique urban city rich in bio-diversity. We have to take a strong stand against poachers who are destroying all these for their own short-term profit."

The AVA only allows the house crow, feral pigeon, purple-backed starling, Philippine glossy starling, common myna and the white-vented myna to be trapped and kept without a licence.

Hot spots for poachers include Pasir Ris Park, Khatib Bongsu and Seletar Airbase, and common targets for poachers are freshwater fish, flying lemurs and water monitor lizards as well as songsbirds, which are either sold or kept as pets.

But small animals are not the only ones being trapped. Last weekend, Mr Ben Lee, founder and head of Nature Trekker, a non-profit organisation, discovered a large boar trap in the foliage on Pulau Ubin.

On Saturday, he found a second trap (picture) large enough to hold 25 men.

"I mistook it for someone's house," he said, adding that in most cases, boars were often caught to be eaten. However, Mr Grant Pereira, head of the Green Volunteers Network, noted that the traps may have been set by farmers to control the large boar population, which wreak havoc on crops. "But it's a slippery slope; once you start trapping, it can … become exploitative," he said.

Poaching, he added, has affected wildlife numbers. In the last 30 years, the numbers of birds and fishes have been diminishing. According a recent study by bird watchers, 44 bird species have become extinct.

"We need more awareness, and more incentive for people to report traps when they see them," Mr Pereira said.

Seen a trap or a poacher? Report it to the NParks Helpline at 1-800-4717300 or the AVA at 6227 0670.