July 29, 2010

Hairy-Nosed Otter makes a comeback

Amid concerns of extinction, the hairy-nosed otter has been spotted once again.

Although once found as far a field as Thailand, Malaysia and Sumatra, the rarest otter in the world was last reported as a road-kill in Borneo during 1997. Now, 13 years later, a live specimen of the hairy-nosed otter has been recently filmed by scientists using an automated camera trap in Borneo’s Deramakot Forest Reserve.

The film footage came as something of a surprise to scientists, since the last time this species was seen in this region of Borneo was over 100 years ago. This sighting, however, is likely to bolster both local and international efforts to conserve its habitat. The species grows to over a meter in length and combines fully webbed paws with useful claws. It is listed as endangered by the IUCN.

The Deramakot Forest Reserve is the first natural tropical rainforest in South East Asia managed in accordance with sustainable forestry principles. Based on just over 55, 083 hectares of mixed forest, it has achieved the Forestry Stewardship Council’s (FSC) Standards for Sustainable Forest Management and has received technical support from the German Agency for Technical Cooperation (GTZ) to develop a management system aimed at the sustainable production of timber. The entire forest area is uninhabited, though there are some small settlements around its margins.



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