Since the forest fires of 2015, we have undertaken intensive conservation projects to restore the peat conditions in the Sabangau Forest to prevent fires in the future. This year our Conservation Team is working on even more dam constructions to block the drainage canals than any other year. In addition, we are planting 1,700 seedlings and distributing 8,000 seeds in burnt areas of the forest.
This seedling planting activity was started in July 2017 and was completed in October. A total of 1,700 seedlings were planted along 4.25 km of transects.
There were a few challenges that the team faced while planting the seedlings. For example, some replanting areas were far from our base camp so the team went on an expedition for six days and five nights. The expedition involved three BNF field staff, two BNF Conservation Assistants and three people from the nearby community who provided additional manpower. The Conservation Team also received support from our volunteer group who joined us between July and August.
This month, the Conservation Team will start to distribute 8,000 seeds in the burnt areas of Sabangau. The team think that this month is a very good time to spread the seeds because the rainy season is just starting so the condition of peatlands is not too dry nor flooded yet.
The Conservation Team has been working hard to restore the peatland in Sabangau Forest so there will be no more fires in the future. We hope that all the seedlings and seeds in this burnt area can grow strong and kick-start natural regeneration so that one day we will see dense, healthy forest again and the wildlife will return to these areas.
Thank you ICCTF Indonesia, The Orangutan Project, The Arcus Foundation, USFWS, Ocean Park Conservation Foundation Hong Kong, Greater Cincinnati Chapter American Association of Zoo Keepers, Zoos Victoria and Orangutan Appeal UK who have supported this work and made reforestation possible in the Sabangau Forest.