4/12/13

Damai, Sun Bear Cub Diary – Resting on Tree and Forest Floor


12/4/2013

Text & Photos by Chiew Lin May

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An 9 months old female sun bear cub, Damai is an arboreal bear. At the Kabili - Sepilok Forest Reserve,  Damai spend a lot of her time in roaming, foraging, digging and climbing trees. However, Damai will take a rest on the tree and forest floor too. Most of the animals have their daily pattern of resting and activities. Like other animals, Damai also give her brain and body a rest too. Damai will sleep on relax mode.  Sometimes if the weather is too hot, Damai prefer to take a rest on the tree rather than foraging for food.
An accomplished a good climber and a tree- dwelling, Damai has been spending most of her day on tall trees over 7 meters height above the jungle floor. Due to sun bears live in tropical temperatures, they do not hibernate like other bears do, as the warm and humid temperatures allow sun bears to find food all year long.
Sun bear cub will stay close with their mother for a long time. For a sun bear cub like Damai, she will sleep with her mother in the tree cave. It was so beautiful and awesome to watch Damai sleep. When you see her, please remember there are many orphans sun bears that have lost their mothers to poachers. Help save the sun bears!!
Here are couples of photos showed how Damai rest and sleep on the tree and forest floor with difference postures.

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Damai loves to lay upon the tree tops when the weather is too hot.

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Damai is an arboreal sun bear. She can climb and spend lot of time in the forest canopy.

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Take a rest after spend the day in digging decayed wood and termite mound.

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Sun bears do not hibernate because they live in such a warm climate.

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After finish digging the dead stump, she find a comfortable place to take a nap.

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It was so beautiful looking Damai sleep peacefully.

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Expression after wake up from nap!! Adorable!

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So tired until sitting down rest on forest floor.

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Amazing!! She choose a fallen tree to take a nap.



4/11/13

RM2.1mil support for Bornean Sun Bear conservation

11/4/2013

Saturday March 30, 2013​

http://thestar.com.my/metro/story.asp?file=%2F2013%2F3%2F30%2Fsouthneast%2F12896396&sec=southneast#.UVaa_JPOw-I.facebook

BSBCC’s youngest resc ued sun bear: Damai, a seven-month-old cub, is seen chewing off decayed wood to look for termites to eat. She was found in a residential area in Damai in November 2012 by a businessman who found her wandering on his porch. Damai was then sent to the Lok Kawi Zoo before being sent to BSBCC.
WITH a distinctive pale horseshoe-shaped imprint on their chests coupled with their cute and cuddly disposition, it is easy to understand why anyone would fall in love with the Malayan sun bears.
Despite the fact that sun bears are a protected species, some unscrupulous people hunt them down for their body parts which are consumed for medicinal purposes while the cubs end up as pets. Over the years, this practice has tragically depleted the sun bear population.
Sun bears (Helarctos malayanus) are the smallest and least known members of the bear family and their population is rapidly diminishing in South-East Asia.
With the support of Yayasan Sime Darby (YSD), the Bornean Sun Bear Conservation Centre (BSBCC) in Sepilok, Sabah, has been working hard to right the wrongdoings of mankind. BSBCC has been rescuing sun bears which have been kept as pets and caring for them with the hope of releasing them back into the wild in the future.
BSBCC is a non-profit organisation initiated by the Sabah Forestry Department (SFD), Sabah Wildlife Department (SWD) and a non-government organisation, Land Empowerment Animals People (LEAP), in 2008 to look after the plight of captive and orphaned sun bears in Sabah and to promote conservation efforts.
In 2012, YSD allocated funding of RM2.1 million for the BSBCC. A major chunk of the funding is being used to renovate an existing bear house and to construct a second bear house where the rescued sun bears will be relocated.
YSD’s sponsorship also includes the construction of a visitor information centre and opening the BSBCC to the public, which would provide financial sustenance to the BSBCC.
YSD governing council member Caroline Christine Russell said the foundation’s sponsorship would help rescued sun bears to recuperate and be rehabilitated in a safe and protected environment.
“When sun bears are kept and treated as pets, they grow into adulthood without learning the necessary skills to survive in the wild. YSD is highly supportive of BSBCC’s mission to rescue captured sun bears and promote sun bear conservation in Borneo. This will halt cruelty to these animals including the killing of sun bears for their supposed medicinal value and keeping their offspring as pets,” she said.
BSBCC chief executive officer Wong Siew Te said the process of catching a sun bear cub involved killing its mother.
“If the law allows sun bears to be kept as pets, it will only fuel demand which would lead to more poaching of sun bears,” he said.
There have also been instances where poachers left cubs to die, after killing their mothers for body parts. The demand for the sun bear’s bile and other parts especially for traditional medicine and even for delicacies is said to be among the reasons for the poaching and illegal trade of the species.
The Malayan sun bear has been classified as “vulnerable” in the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) Red Book Listing of Endangered Species since 2007 due to its dwindling population over the past 30 years.
Sun bears do not breed well in captivity and due to their naturally slow reproductive rate, a female sun bear may only have up to three to four cubs in her lifetime. Thus, excessive hunting or capturing of cubs can easily wipe out the local population.
It is illegal to kill or hunt these bears under the 1997 Sabah Wildlife Conservation Enactment and those found guilty of rearing or possessing protected species such as the Malayan sun bear could face a mandatory jail term between one month and a year.
The BSBCC is currently home to 28 rescued sun bears.
The latest addition is a four-month old female cub that was found in a housing area in Kota Kinabalu in early November last year.
For more information on what BSBCC does and how the public can help with the sun bear’s conservation efforts, please visithttp://www.bsbcc.org.my.

Boost for sun bear conservation

11/04/2013

http://www.selangortimes.com/index.php?section=news&permalink=20130328164457-boost-for-sun-bear-conservation

Published: Fri, 29 Mar 2013

KUALA LUMPUR:  Thanks to support from Yayasan Sime Darby (YSD), the Bornean Sun Bear Conservation Centre (BSBCC) in Sepilok, Sabah, has been able to continue rescuing sun bears which have been kept as pets and caring for them with the hope of releasing them back into the wild in the future.

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Five-year-old Kuamut walking on a fallen tree in the forest enclosure of BSBCC. The female, named after the town she was found in, was rescued in January 2009. She was found kept as a pet in a small iron-cage with two heavy metal chains with a brass lock weighing more than 2kg holding her down.

In 2012, YSD allocated RM2.1 million for the BSBCC.
A major chunk of the funding is being used to renovate an existing bear house and to construct a second bear house where the rescued sun bears will be relocated.
YSD’s sponsorship also includes the construction of a visitor information centre and opening the BSBCC to the public, which would provide financial sustenance to the BSBCC.
Sun bears (Helarctos malayanus) are the smallest and least known members of the bear family and their population is rapidly diminishing in Southeast Asia.
But despite being a protected species, sun bears are killed for their body parts which are consumed for medicinal purposes while the cubs end up as pets.
Over the years, this practice has tragically depleted the sun bear population.
BSBCC is a non-profit organisation initiated by the Sabah Forestry Department (SFD), Sabah Wildlife Department (SWD) and a non-government organisation, Land Empowerment Animals People (LEAP), in 2008 to look into the plight of captive and orphaned sun bears in Sabah and to promote conservation efforts.
YSD governing council member Caroline Christine Russell said the foundation’s sponsorship would help rescued sun bears to recuperate and be rehabilitated in a safe and protected environment.
“When sun bears are kept and treated as pets, they grow into adulthood without learning the necessary skills to survive in the wild. YSD is highly supportive of BSBCC’s mission to rescue captured sun bears and promote sun bear conservation in Borneo. This will halt cruelty to these animals including the killing of sun bears for their supposed medicinal value and keeping their offspring as pets,” she said.
BSBCC chief executive officer Wong Siew Te said the process of catching a sun bear cub involved killing its mother.
“If the law allows sun bears to be kept as pets, it will only fuel demand which would lead to more poaching of sun bears,” he said.
The Malayan sun bear has been classified as “vulnerable” in the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) Red Book Listing of Endangered Species since 2007 due to its dwindling population over the past 30 years.
Sun bears do not breed well in captivity and due to their naturally slow reproductive rate, a female sun bear may only have up to three to four cubs in her lifetime.
Thus, excessive hunting or capturing of cubs can easily wipe out the local population.
It is illegal to kill or hunt these bears under the 1997 Sabah Wildlife Conservation Enactment and those found guilty of rearing or possessing protected species such as the Malayan sun bear could face a mandatory jail term of between one month and a year. For more information on what BSBCC does and how the public can help with the sun bear’s conservation efforts, visit http://www.bsbcc.org.my.

4/8/13

Damai, Sun Bear Cub Diary - Explore in Forest Part 1

8/4/2013

Text and photos by Chiew Lin May
Damai is one of the female sun bear cub rescued by Sabah Wildlife Department that sent to Bornean Sun Bear Conservation Centre (BSBCC). She is now 9 months old. Every time walk her in forest, she is very curious and loves to sniff the around environment, which is what sun bears love to do !! She is doing really well and glad for her! Here are some pictures just tell a story better than words ever can. Please help us spread the words and spread the loves.

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4/4/13

Special Moments with Natalie, Rungus, Ah Lun and Julaini in the BSBCC Forest Enclosure Part 1

Text and photos by Chiew Lin May
On March 13th 2013, Ah Lun and Julaini stepped foot into the forest for the first time. These 4 sub-adult sun bears are now spending their days roaming, foraging, and digging in the Bornean Sun Bear Conservation Centre (BSBCC) forest enclosure.

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Ah Lun and Julaini watch how and wondering why Natalie go out from door.

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Ah Lun, female sub-adult sun bear step foot on forest floor. She follow Rungus roaming around the forest enclosure.

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Julaini is the last one who confident to step the foot on forest floor.

Now Natalie and Rungus are confidently roaming the forest. Once the door is open both of them will go out immediately. They are enjoying their freedom. They have large trees to climb, decayed wood/logs, soil to dig in, and a natural forest to explore. Through the forest enclosure they look for a comfortable place to take a rest. They are doing well and spending the rest of their days getting used to the sights and sounds of their new environment where they are learning what it takes to live like wild sun bears.
Natalie is an excellent climber, and spends much of her time in trees foraging for her meals, insects, by using her long, sharp claws. Natalie is a great leader. She is very independent and has taught herself how to climb high up in the trees. Additionally, she loves to be outside. Rungus likes to makes a mess by scraping off all the soil or decayed wood she can searching for termites, beetles and other invertebrates. Ah Lun and Julaini surprisingly have shown some confident roaming in the forest enclosure already. Ah Lun prefers to spend her time alone, playing happily in the forest enclosure. It took Julaini a while to come out of his door and take a few steps. He was extremely wary of his new surroundings. He sniffed and foraged around the entire place.
It has been very heart-warming to see them grow in confidence and strength, as they become used to using all four limbs and climbing high up in the trees. All these things encourage natural, wild behaviour. They are all making great progress.
Bornean Sun Bear Conservation Centre (BSBCC) is in a wonderful location for true rehabilitation as the forest has huge trees sun bears love. Seeing this forest dwelling species digging and climbing happily in the forest all day long is extremely motivating.
Here are a couple of photos of Natalie, Rungus, Ah Lun and Julaini roaming, digging and climbing trees at BSBCC forest enclosure.

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Natalie, Rungus, Ah Lun and Julaini is happily roaming at forest enclosure.

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Natalie, the group leader become an excellent climber.

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Natalie loves to spend a lot of their time on trees.

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Agile climber, Natalie use her powerful and long claws to climb trees search for food or rest on trees.

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Rungus is like to spend time on digging soil and decayed wood foraging for food.

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Rungus was keeping an eye out whilst foraging.

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Using her long and sharp claws, Ah Lun was busy foraging food from the tree hole.

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Ah Lun use canines to chew the dead log.

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Julaini likes spend much of the day sunbathing or resting. Sometimes, Ah Lun and Natalie will company and play together with him.

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It was hot afternoon, Natalie took rest on the forest floor.

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Natalie use long tongues to slurp up the termites or insects.

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Rungus and Natalie was grooming each other!!

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In the forest, Rungus and Natalie was play together. It is amazing !! They love to explore forest very much.

Keep up to date on Bornean Sun Bear Conservation Centre news by visiting our website www.bsbcc.org.my