Way Kambas National Park (WKNP) located in the Lampung Province in the southern Sumatra. Though this park widely famous by their Sumatran elephant, but more than that, the park has 406 bird species and 50 different species of mammals which many of them are critically endangered like Sumatran tiger and rhino. The landscape covers 125.621,30 ha of swamp and lowland rainforest, but the habitat of those charismatic species has been degraded by extensive logging in 1960s-1970s that also impacted to animal population in Way Kambas National Park. However, considering its uniqueness in biodiversity, this year Way Kambas National Park is appointed as part of ASEAN Heritage Park.
In order to maintain the ASEAN Heritage Park title, WKNP management should make their best effort to save biodiversity inside. The threat to ecosystem and wildlife population of WKNP includes illegal logging, forest fire, wildlife poaching activities and human-elephant conflict. WKNP experiences deforestation at 0.109% rate per year. Illegal logging could lead to habitat loss and sometimes make elephant come near to village and could lead to human-elephant conflict. And it can also affect the number of illegal poaching that could leads to illegal wildlife trafficking of elephant goods (mostly ivory). Human-elephant conflict may not directly affect elephant population, but it can affect people’s support toward elephant conservation.
WHAT WE DO
- WCS has worked in Way Kambas National Park since 2000, through their team Wildlife Response Unit (WRU) for responding conflict between human-elephant. It includes human-elephant conflict mitigation, patrolling in 163 elephant tracks in villages around WKNP, facilitate self-management mitigation training and initiates village forum to independently mitigating human-elephant conflict.
- Protect elephants and their habitat: Set-up two teams of SMART patrol unit specifically targetting illegal killing of elephant inside the park in Way Kambas National Park. A wildlife crime investigation also conducted using DNA evidence as crime evidence in collaboration with Eijkman Institute.
- Conduct study on elephant population using DNA through elephant feces in 2010. Our study shows that elephant population in Way Kambas NP were stabile between 2002 to 2010.