Duri, the birth of Sumatran elephants in the area of Balairaja wildlife reserve in Indonesia is the most exciting thing for us in early 2018. But behind the happiness there is a fear that is so enveloped it, the fear of this little guy will not be able to survive until he grows up and able to donate new descendants to the next elephant population of sumatera.
This fear is triggered by a very extreme public response that says, Sumatran elephants are “destructive pests”. The community is a community right on the elephant trek remaining from the balairaja wildlife reserve that used to be their native habitat. With the determination of the Balairaja government of Indonesia is set as a conservation area with an area of ± 18,000 hectares in 1986 as an enclave of elephant balairaja.
The population of Sumatran elephants remaining in Balairaja wildlife reserve is steadily declining due to the declining habitat area every year, out of a total of 18,000 hectares of wildlife reserves now only remaining 200 hectares. The remaining populations are now split with these habitat conditions. Some of the remaining populations are now migrating toward Giam Siak Kecil – Bukit Batu with the remaining population that does not touch the 30 tail, if we do not work now, then their population will continue to decrease.
The high intensity of meetings with humans that led to conflict and resulted in losses on both sides was the main trigger of the declining Sumatran elephant population. which is the domino effect of forest degradation process, illegal loging including also hunting. With the current conditions, the biggest fear that continues to haunt all of us is will our children and grandchildren enjoy and know the Sumatran elephants are here.
In the remaining habitat, now the Sumatran elephants are considered pests that harm to humans, whereas if reviewed, previous plantations owned by residents are home to them. Even some time ago one of the facebook users uploaded some photos that mention his anger because the elephant had entered and eat some plants that exist in his garden.
Sumatran elephants are not destructive pests, Sumatran elephants are endemic Sumatran animals that have the same rights as us. Live and survive in the ecosystem and balance the existing Ecosystems in Sumatra.
with the assumption as it happens today, it is not impossible will continue to suppress the number of Sumatran elephant population decreases, education and mediation needs to be done as a first step in the process of conservation, restoration and protection of community-based, socialization needs to be done to save both lives, both it’s Human or Sumatran elephant.