SBI team rescues endangered male proboscis monkey in South Kalimantan

SBI team rescues endangered male proboscis monkey in South Kalimantan

Two proboscis monkeys under the surveillance of veterinarian in SBI's rehabilitation center in Banjarmasin, South Kalimantan. (ANTARA/Bayu Pratama/sh)

Banjarmasin, S Kalimantan (ANTARA) - A rescue team of Indonesia's Friends of Bekantan (SBI) rescued a male proboscis monkey (Nasalis larvatus) under severe trauma in Kelayan Barat Village of South Banjarmasin, South Kalimantan.

The villagers came across the endangered species in an abandoned land in the village.

"When we rescued him, the endemic species of South Kalimantan was under severe trauma and was bleeding. We rescued the primate to heal the trauma," founder and chairperson of SBI Amalia Rezeki stated here on Thursday.

The proboscis monkey, or locally known as Bekantan, was found by villagers on Tuesday (Oct 29).

The SBI has coordinated with South Kalimantan's Natural Conservation Agency (BKSDA) to care for the long-nosed primate.

Rezeki stated that in 2019, she had received reports from the locals, who had spotted the Bekantan entering villages and crop fields.

According to Rezeki, the protected species were compelled to migrate to new places since forest fires and land conversion had destroyed their habitat.

"When they migrated, it is possible for some bekantan to have got separated from the groups and to seek food for survival. Likewise with the case in Mantuil, though we have yet to find any population of bekantan in the area," she pointed out.

Rezeki will seek recommendation of the veterinarian and South Kalimantan BKSDA before it releases the primate into its habitat.

SBI is a non-profit organization that focuses on bekantan conservation.

Rezeki stated that the shy proboscis, also known locally as the Dutch monkey, has been placed on the red list or list of endangered species of the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN).

It has been protected by the government under Ministerial Decree No. P.20/2008 as amended by Ministerial Decree no. P.106/2018.

Proboscis monkey is also placed on Appendix 1 of CITES according to which the trading of the endangered species is banned.

Zainal Abidin, coordinator of SBI's rescue team, stated that poaching has also posed a threat to the Bekantan population.

Abidin expressed concern that domesticating a bekantan would pose health risks, as the proboscis monkey possesses DNA similar to that of humans. Related news: Saving Julia and Cykita

EDITED BY INE

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