Thursday, June 7, 2012

Sabah Park to Go Wild Over Endangered Animals

By Jaswinder Kaur

KOTA KINABALU: A new wildlife park in Sabah will become a site for the captive breeding of endangered animals such as the Sumatran rhinoceros.

Sabah Wildlife Department deputy director Laurentius Ambu said the Sumatran Rhinoceros Conservation Workshop, which ended on Friday, had pointed out the need to have captive breeding of the animal.

“Captive breeding could be done here at the Lok Kawi Wildlife Park.”

There are between 35 and 50 rhinoceros in the state.

The park will also become a focal point for environmental education and research activities.

“This park will be used to create public awareness,” Ambu said at a briefing for Tourism, Culture and Environment Minister Datuk Masidi Manjun at the park’s open day yesterday.

“A second component of the park is the planting of indigenous tree species so that visitors can learn more about plants here. This effort is being undertaken by the Sabah Forestry Department.”

He said other zoos and parks in the region had also started small and later became a big hit, such as the Singapore Zoological Garden.

He said the park had collected nearly RM400,000 in entry fees since its soft opening five months ago. About 95 per cent of visitors were Malaysians.

The 112ha park is located 25km from the city and has more than 1000 animal species.

Masidi urged the private sector, especially oil palm companies, to help the Sabah Wildlife Department, which requires more than RM2 million to run the park annually.

“Oil palm companies can adopt animals as part of their corporate responsibility. Hotels can also sponsor animals.

“I will talk to tour agents to include the park as part of the city tour.”

Shangri-La’s Rasa Ria Resort is the only organisation giving financial aid to the park by helping to maintain the orang utan area.

Meanwhile, the Sabah Wildlife Department has signed a memorandum of understanding with the Tokyo Zoological Park Society to work on the exchange of animals, staff and knowledge.

The department was represented by its director, Patrick Andau, while Tokyo Zoological Park Society chief director Yoshinobu Asa- kura signed on behalf of the society.

Masidi said for a start, the Japanese would send flamingos to the wildlife park.

“We hope these flamingos can breed and create juveniles which we will then send back to Japan.”

(c) 2007 New Straits Times. Provided by ProQuest Information and Learning. All rights Reserves.

3 comments:

Dylan said...

Hope that this wildlife park will help protect and breeding endangered species such as flamingos and Sumatran Rhino's. The collaboration with foreign countries such as Japan will also be beneficial to both the country's efforts of wildlife protection.

Dylan said...

This Sabah Wildlife Park is a focal point for environmental education and research activities, hope that visitors will gain awareness after visiting the park.

Jeff Ambuyat said...

hidupan liar yang benar2 diancam kepupusan sekarang ialah badak sumatera.. jumlahnya terlalu sedikit di negeri ini.. eloklah para NGO dan juga orang awam sama2 memikul tanggungjawab untuk melindungi haiwan unik ini..

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