Java's Forest Area Shrinks to 24%; Here 5 Endemic Animals Listed as Endangered
TEMPO.CO, Jakarta - The Indonesian island of Java is one of the world’s most densely populated areas. Unfortunately, the island's forest cover continues to shrink. According to the latest data from the Environment and Forestry Ministry (KLHK), the forest area is only about 24 percent or 128,297 square kilometers.
Consequently, some endemic animals are threatened with extinction. As reported by various sources, here are five endangered animals native to Java Island:
1. Javan Slow Loris
The Javan slow loris, locally known as Kukang, has been classified as a protected species since 1973. This is because the population of this nocturnal primate has declined by 80 percent for the past 24 consecutive years. The International Union for Conservation of Nature and Natural Resources (IUCN) lists it as critically endangered.
The Javanese slow lorises currently occupy many nature reserves and wildlife sanctuaries in Java.
2. Javan Surili
Surili is an Old World monkey that is native to many areas of West Java Province. As of 2020, the population is estimated at 1,400-1,500. Human activities such as illegal hunting and deforestation are strongly considered to be the cause of this primate's decline. The IUCN puts Surili on its endangered list. The Indonesian Environment Minister’s Regulation No. 20 of 2018 also classifies it as a protected species.
3. Trulek Bird
Trulek birds are also known as shorebirds because they spend most of their time on the beach looking for food and habitat. This endemic bird was previously declared extinct. However, in the 2000s, the bird suddenly reappeared, making its status critical to the IUCN.
4. Javan Gibbon
Citing from the conservation website of the Javan gibbon or Owa Jawa, their population is now only about 4,000 remaining, occupying the entire region of Java. These gibbons have a distinctive voice that can be heard from a distance of one kilometer when communicating with other gibbons.
This species has been classified as endangered by the Environment Ministry.
5. Javan Leopard
The Javan Leopard, also known as the black panther or Macan Kumbang, has a distinctive spotted pattern. In 2018, the population was recorded at 250. The species has been listed as Endangered on the IUCN Red List. This is believed to be due to increasingly limited habitat and wild hunting on Java Island.
MELINDA KUSUMA NINGRUM
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