Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Human-wildlife Conflict

May 27, 2009
Elephant found dead after encroaching into plantation

KUALA LUMPUR: A female elephant, which was part of a small herd reported to be causing damage in several oil palm plantations, was found dead in Gerik last week. She was believed to have been poisoned.

The animal, almost an adult judging from the measurement of its front soles, succumbed to blood poisoning caused by ingestion of pesticide-laced food, said sources.

The carcass was discovered by wildlife rangers on May 18, at Kampung Strang, located next to a forest reserve that connects to the Belum-Temenggor forest complex.

A source alleged that the oil palm estate was an illegal operation by smallholders that encroached into state land.

He said there had been complaints of animal disturbance in the area by three elephants.

He added that the damage was not severe but “yet, they resorted to poisoning the innocent elephants.”

Department of Wildlife and National Park (Perhilitan) deputy director-general Misliah Mohamed Bashir confirmed that a report had been received.

“We will act against the culprit but we must get the proof. Our people in Gerik are still investigating the matter,” she said.

Elephants are protected species under the Wildlife Protection Act. Killing one without a licence is an offence that carries a fine not exceeding RM3,000 or imprisonment not exceeding three years or both, upon conviction.

To manage the human-wildlife conflict, more than 100 elephants had been relocated in the last 15 years.

No comments: