Sumatra, Indonesia has a network of protected areas important to wild cats. However, their presence is not confined to only these protected areas. Many populations exist outside the protected areas. This project aims to determine baseline population parameters of Sumatra’s wild cats in human-dominated landscapes and identify and mitigate critical threats to their survival, including deforestation for palm oil plantations and development. Despite a logging moratorium running for 13 years in Aceh, illegal logging and oil palm encroachment persists and will be hard to prevent given the global market demand for palm oil and subsistence. The increasingly shrinking and isolated wild habitats make species coexistence and survival very challenging, which can lead to an increase in human-wildlife conflicts.
Research: Close knowledge gaps in wild cat status and human-wild cat interactions in two protection forest management units through several surveys (camera trap surveys, socio-economic surveys, statistical modeling, and illegal market analysis).
Practice: Implement best practice wild cat conservation based on the results of the research that will include law enforcement, human-wildlife conflict mitigation, and development of a financial and administrative framework to maintain these in the long term.
Outreach: Raise awareness and build capacities of local stakeholders (scientists, decision-makers, local community members) to reduce threats and protect wild cat populations.
Project location - Indonesia, Asia