Rainforest Trust purchased and protected 74,206 acres in Asia and the Pacific this year, including a variety of unique habitats!
Some of these acres were home to small, endemic species found nowhere else in the world. On Indonesia’s Sulawesi Island, Rainforest Trust added 72 acres to a now 47,328-acre protected network of coastal habitat. This area is a key nesting location for the Endangered Maleo, an iconic turkey-like bird. We also added five parcels of vital riparian habitat to the buffer zone of Nepal’s Koshi Tappu Wildlife Reserve. Here, we’ve protected 485 different bird species on 42,560 acres, including the Critically Endangered Bengal Florican.
In a small but mighty declaration, we protected 20 acres in Fiji which includes a cave that is home to 95 percent of the global population of the Endangered Fijian Free-tailed Bat. The community hosted an elaborate dedication ceremony for the new Nakanacagi Cave Reserve that included traditional song, dance, and feasting.
Communities were also in support of ecological corridors for far-ranging charismatic species. In Malaysia, Rainforest Trust helped created and then expanded the new Kenyir State Park to 74,140 acres. This park permanently protects precious habitat for the Critically Endangered Malayan Tiger while overturning a major logging concession valued at $45 million in timber.
The emerging Lumbasumba Conservation Area will be the crucial link in a mosaic of protected areas across the Himalayas of southern China, Nepal and India. The corridor will ultimately unite 14 million acres – an area vital for Snow Leopards, Red Panda and other threatened species.
Rainforest Trust continues to strengthen protective measures for our reserves and parks. For example, on the island of Sulawesi in Indonesia we purchased a property and establishing a new ranger training facility while in Myanmar, we’re building a guard station at the Mahamyaing Wildlife Sanctuary.
From the Pacific islands of Palau, Papua New Guinea and New Caledonia, to India, Cambodia and Vietnam, Rainforest Trust continues its work to protect at risk rainforests. And next year we start a major effort to assist new reserves in Papua, Laos and Thailand.
“Asia’s incredible biodiversity is threatened by the rate and scale of development in the region,” shared Angela Yang, Rainforest Trust Asia Conservation Director. “It is quite literally a race against time to create these critical protected areas to ensure the survival of globally threatened species and their habitats.”
Our in-country partners and Rainforest Trust’s Fellows and Guardians coordinate these projects on the ground. Seventeen Rainforest Trust Fellows joined our ranks in Asia and the Pacific this year, performing essential tasks to create new reserves and parks. Furthermore, 21 Rainforest Trust Guardians are on the frontlines of protecting endangered species and reserves across the region.
But the work is far from over. Our current projects in Asia and the Pacific will protect an additional 1.6 million acres in 2019. Rainforest Trust urgently seeks your support to protect Critically Endangered species like the Philippine Eagle and Bornean Orangutan. All gifts are matched by the SAVES Challenge, doubling your impact. Please join us today to step up efforts now!