How did Elephants get to Borneo? Now we may Know the Answer

How did Elephants get to Borneo? Now we may Know the Answer

Bornean pygmy elephants, the planet’s smallest living elephants, are a unique subspecies whose origins have long puzzled experts. The million-dollar question is when and how Asian elephants got to the island, there to split off into a subspecies of their own over time. Now a group of scientists say they…

New Hope for Malaysia’s last Rhinos?

New Hope for Malaysia’s last Rhinos?

For a while it seemed that the condition of Malaysia’s last female Sumatran rhino was touch-and-go, but it appears now that Iman is now on the mend. According to a senior wildlife official in Sabah, she has regained some of her appetite and is responding well to treatment at the…

Iman’s Fate hangs in the Balance

Iman’s Fate hangs in the Balance

Iman, Malaysia’s very last female Sumatran rhino, has been sick for over a month now. In mid-December her keepers discovered that she had been bleeding from her uterus and the elderly female rhino was soon diagnosed with a uterine tumor. Vets are keeping a close eye on her, but her…

Are we seeing the Last of Malaysia’s Rhinos?

Are we seeing the Last of Malaysia’s Rhinos?

Malaysia has only two Sumatran rhinos left and both of them, a male and a female, are in captivity. It’s no surprise then that when Iman, the female, fell seriously ill recently her keepers became exceedingly concerned. Not long ago Puntung, another female rhino, had to be put down after…

Iman the Rhino is gravelly Ill

Iman the Rhino is gravelly Ill

In June Puntung, one of Malaysia’s last two female Sumatran rhinos, succumbed to an especially acute form of skin cancer. Conservationists and animal lovers alike lamented her passing. They took comfort in the fact that the other female rhino, Iman, remained relatively healthy and strong. This continued to kindle hope…

Trophy Hunting is no Harmless Sport

Trophy Hunting is no Harmless Sport

Quite a few people like to shoot unsuspecting animals dead with powerful rifles from a safe distance and then pose with the remains of these poor creatures in order to flaunt their supposed virility. Don’t ask us why. We have no idea why these people consider such acts of cowardice…

Another Pygmy Elephant dies from Gunshot Wounds in Sabah

Another Pygmy Elephant dies from Gunshot Wounds in Sabah

Bornean pygmy elephants are facing existential threats in Sabah and so the death of any more wild elephants in the state is bad news. Yet just over the past few months several wild elephants have been shot dead by poachers or irate plantation workers. Now another wild elephant is dead….

Another Pygmy Elephant is Shot Dead

Another Pygmy Elephant is Shot Dead

The wild pygmy elephant was found dead near a small river at an oil palm plantation in Tawau. The pachyderm’s remains were riddled with three bullets. It doesn’t take a Sherlock Holmes to figure out what happened: the bull elephant had been killed either by plantation workers or local farmers…

Bushmeat Traders are Nabbed in Sabah

Bushmeat Traders are Nabbed in Sabah

The bushmeat trade in Sabah is an acute problem, posing as it does an grave threat to the continued survival of endangered species in the wild. Poachers around the state’s forests carry on killing protected animals just so that someone can eat them. Encouragingly, however, local authorities are aware of…

Pangolin Traders are Nabbed in Sabah

Pangolin Traders are Nabbed in Sabah

A man and a woman at a parking lot in the town of Donggongon, in Sabah. That seems innocuous enough. Except the pair were there to sell a live pangolin, which is illegal. “They were trying to sell the pangolin to a ‘customer’ at the parking lot, where the transaction…

Wild Elephants ‘can Inflict Harm on Plantations.’ So What to Do?

Wild Elephants ‘can Inflict Harm on Plantations.’ So What to Do?

Millions of ringgit in losses over an area of 30 hectares. That’s how much damage a herd of feeding elephants can inflict on a plantation, according to the Sabah Wildlife Department. In just a single night elephants can destroy six hectares of crops, the department’s head Augustine Tuuga explained. “Elephant…

Sabah’s Leopards are in Trouble

Sabah’s Leopards are in Trouble

Clouded leopards are elusive creatures that hunt at night and spend most of their time away from prying eyes within dense forests. Thus, estimating their numbers in places like Sabah’s forests is a challenging undertaking. Yet a team of scientists led by researchers at Oxford University’s Wildlife Conservation Research Unit (WildCRU)…

The Online Sale of ‘Exotic’ Animals Carries On. It must be Stopped

The Online Sale of ‘Exotic’ Animals Carries On. It must be Stopped

Many Malaysians frequent Facebook, WhatsApp and other social media outlets to keep in touch with friends and relatives. Others, though, do so with a nefarious purpose: to buy and sell protected animals. Many of these animals are illegally traded “exotic” pets, which range from rare turtles to critically endangered hornbills,…

Pygmy Elephants face an Uncertain Future

Pygmy Elephants face an Uncertain Future

Every now and then reports of orphaned Bornean pygmy elephants being rescued by the Sabah Wildlife Department surface. These baby elephants have become lost while their mothers are nowhere to be seen. In the past seven years 22 baby elephants have been rescued this way. Many of them cannot survive,…

A Wild Elephant is Shot dead in Sabah

A Wild Elephant is Shot dead in Sabah

The female pygmy elephant was found dead on a plantation just outside a forest reserve in the Kinabatangan area of Sabah. The adult jumbo, which was around 10 years old, was riddled with wounds from shotgun pellets. She might have taken days to die of her wounds in great agony….

Sabah’s Bushmeat trade now also Caters to Foreign Tourists. For Shame

Sabah’s Bushmeat trade now also Caters to Foreign Tourists. For Shame

If you thought Sabah’s infamous bushmeat culture couldn’t get any worse, think again. The Bornean state, famed for its renowned biodiversity, has long been a hotspot of “exotic” dishes made from the meat of endangered wild animals. The practice is against the law, but there’s been a thriving well-documented black…