Lubuk Basung, W Sumatra (ANTARA) - The West Sumatra Natural Resources Conservation Agency (BKSDA) recorded eight cases of human-wildlife conflicts (HWCs) in eight villages of Agam District from January to March 11, 2024.

"The HWCs involved several Sumatran tigers and an estuarine crocodile," Head of the BKSDA-Maninjau Office Rusdiyan P. Ritonga stated in Lubuk Basung, West Sumatra Province, on Monday.

The HWCs occurred in the villages of Salareh Aia, Salareh Aia Timur, Baringi, Ampek Koto, Sipinang, Pasia Laweh, Tiku Lima Jorong, and Tigo Koto Silungkang, Ritonga revealed.

In the Salareh Aia case, a Sumatran tiger was sighted in the village's residential area in January, while in the Salareh Air Timur case that also took place in January, a Sumatran tiger had attacked a goat, he remarked.

In March, a Sumatran tiger attacked a buffalo in Baringi Village of Palembayan Sub-district, causing minor injuries to it, while two buffaloes in Tigo Koto Silungkang Village were killed by the tigers, he said.

Meanwhile, an estuarine crocodile snatched a resident of Tiku Lima Jorong Village in Tanjung Mutiara Sub-district, he stated, adding that the HWCs resulted in the deaths of two buffalos and a villager.

In preventing the recurrence of HWCs, Ritonga stated that his office's rangers, along with local residents and police officers, conducted a joint ground verification and identification.

The BKSDA has also installed wildlife trap cameras at several locations where locals have frequently sighted tigers, he remarked.

ANTARA reported earlier that Sumatran tigers, the smallest of all tigers, are currently a critically endangered species only found on Sumatra, Indonesia's second-largest island.

The tigers are on the brink of extinction owing to deforestation, poaching, and conflicts between wild animals and local people owing to their dwindling habitats.

Regarding the HWCs, the cases were not only found in West Sumatra but also in several other provinces on the Sumatra island, such as Riau, North Sumatra, and Aceh.

In Aceh, the Indonesian Forum for the Environment (Walhi) recorded 113 HWC-related occurrences between 2019 and 2023, including 33 involving Sumatran elephants.

The conflicts had resulted in the deaths of 22 Sumatran elephants, according to Walhi-Aceh Chapter Head Ahmad Shalihin's statement, published on the conservation group's website, which ANTARA recently quoted.

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Translator: Altas M, Rahmad Nasution
Editor: Anton Santoso
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