On July 23, 2021, Balai Konservasi Sumber Daya Alam (BKSDA, the Provincial Nature Conservation Agency) West Sumatra rescued a female Sumatran tiger from a palm oil plantation managed by PT. Pasaman Marama Sejahtera (PT. PMS). Currently the Sumatran tiger, later is named as Sipogu, is being taken care at the Kinantan Cultural Wildlife Park (TMSBK), Bukittinggi. BKSDA and the local government agreed to immediately release the tiger back to a nearby natural habitat. One of the main challenges in the release process is the identification of a release location which often must be decided in a short period of time. For this reason, ecological modeling can be done using several scientific approaches.

Using a combined species distribution modelling techniques, SINTAS Indonesia has assisted the BKSDA West Sumatra in modeling suitable release locations within the West Sumatra province. The data on Sumatran tiger occurrence used in the modeling was collected during a recent joint survey between SINTAS Indonesia and BKSDA West Sumatra. The predictive map produced from the modelling has been evaluated by the head of BKSDA West Sumatra, and its field officials, including head of Pasaman Resort, section head of Conservation Region I, and relevant BKSDA’s officers. This initiative has become a key initial step of the overall processes of Sipogu releases to her home.

Following the predictive map and led by the head of Pasaman and Agam Resorts, two well-experienced field teams have been sent out to carry out a detailed ground check throughout the best predicted release area located in the nearby cultivation-right area. The main objectives of the survey were to verify accessibility, mainly sweep and dismantle snares, identification of prey availability, and install camera trap devices for post release monitoring on Sipogu occurrence.

“I hope SINTAS Indonesia continues its support to the management authority in strengthening the management of wildlife and conservation areas. As a national asset, SINTAS Indonesia must be at the forefront to maintain the sustainability of natural ecosystems as a life support system. SINTAS Indonesia must continue to participate in ensuring that conservation efforts in Indonesia are on the right track.” said Rusdiyan Ritonga, head of the Pasaman resort.

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