INDONESIA: TWO ELEPHANTS ELECTROCUTED; HORNBILLS RESCUED FROM SMUGGLERS

JAKARTA-- Two Sumatran elephants were found dead due to suspected electrocution in East Aceh District of Sumatras Province of Aceh.

In South Sulawesi province, the Security and Law Enforcement Agency (BPPH) of the Ministry of Environment and Forestry for Sulawesi foiled an attempt to smuggle four endangered knobbed horbills (Rhyticeros Cassidix).

In the case of the electrocuted elephants, the carcasses of the elephants were found completely with their tusks, Head of Natural Resource Conservation Agency (BKSDA) of Aceh, Sapto Aji Prabowo said, adding the elephants were suspected to have died after they came in contact with an electric fence installed by local residents.

The dead elephants were found by locals in Semedang Jaya Hamlet, Seumanah Jaya Gampong, Rantau Peuruelak, East Aceh, on Sunday at around 11 a.m. local time. They then reported the incident to Leuser Conservation Forum and to the BKSDA of Aceh.

The elephants were a 10-year-old male and a 20-year-old female.

"We call on residents not to install electric fence around their garden as it not only threatens wildlife but also humans themselves," Prabowo remarked.

Sumatra Island is home to several endemic species such as Sumatran elephant (Elephas maximus sumatranus), Sumatran tiger (Panthera tigris sumatrae), orangutan (Pongo abelii), and sun bear (Helarctos malayanus), all of which are threatened species.

On the hornbills smuggling, Head of BPPH Muhammad Nur said the agency handed over the four Sulawesi wrinkled horbills to BKSDA of Central Sulawesi to take care. These birds are protected species.

One female and three male hornbills were confiscated.

The birds were transported using a rented car from Buol District to Palu City in Central Sulawesi.

Nur said that the Sulawesi's wrinkled hornbill is considered one of the most beautiful species of all 54 species of hornbill worldwide.

The Government of Indonesia has included the Sulawesi wrinkled hornbill as a protected species under Law no.7/1999.

The wrinkled hornbill, also known as the knobbed hornbill, is a colorful hornbill native to Indonesia. It is the fauna symbol of South Sulawesi Province.

This large black hornbill has a yellow bill, white tail feathers, pale blue skin around the eye, blackish feet and bare dark blue throat.

Endemic to Indonesia, the knobbed hornbill is found in Sulawesi, Buton, Lembeh, Togian and Muna Island.

Source: NAM NEWS NETWORK

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