Two More Flying Squad Soon be Implemented | WWF Indonesia

Two More Flying Squad Soon be Implemented



Posted on 01 February 2007   |  
The signing of MoU to adopt Flying Squad by PT. Musim Mas (photo: WWF Ind-Tesso Nilo prog/ Sri Mariati)
During 2006, there had been two palm oil companies that are committed to get involved in mitigating human-elephant conflict in Tesso Nilo National Park. PT. Inti Indosawit Subur and PT. Musim Mas had signed MoU to adopt flying squad approach as a measure to mitigate human elephant conflict. The latest signing is among PT. Musim Mas, WWF Indonesia and Tesso Nilo National Park Foundation on December 22 in Pekanbaru. This progress shows good response from companies in the adoption of Flying Squad approach.

Though PT. Musim Mas™ palm plantation areas are not directly bordered with Tesso Nilo National Park, the management feels interested to take part in mitigating human 'elephant conflict occurred around the park with their commitment to funding the operation of one Flying Squad team for two years in the first round. In the MoU, WWF is to give technical support and its expertise for the operation of the Flying Squad team and Tesso Nilo National Park Foundation is as funding recipient that will distribute the fund donated by the company. With this MoU, to date there has been three companies operating around Tesso Nilo committed to support and implemented Flying Squad around the park.

Flying Squad is a team consisting of some trained elephants and the handlers or known as mahout which are equipped with some tools. This team works to drive wild elephants which enter community farming land back to their habitat. To anticipate elephant raid this squad conduct routine patrol around its operation area.

Saleh Djasit, the vice of board of trustee of Tesso Nilo National Park Foundation who attended the MoU ceremonial session welcome this collaboration as he saw that collaboration with companies for the management of Tesso Nilo are now in place. He added that the foundation that was established amid this year would take lead to initiate such collaboration as it is in line with the mission of the foundation. Furthermore he said that he himself understood the long way to struggle Tesso Nilo forest as an elephant conservation area therefore he supported this kind of initiative. Meanwhile, director of PT. Musim Mas, Surja in the opportunity said that he felt glad that the company could make some contribution in the attempt to mitigate human-elephant conflict.

Land use around Tesso Nilo is surrounded by industrial forest plantation and palm oil plantation. Most of areas located in the northern part and eastern part of TNNP are directly bordered with palm oil plantations belong to private companies and communities, and also community settlement. With this kind of condition, human-elephant conflict may frequently recur.

To optimize the management of Tesso Nilo National Park and the proposed extension as an elephant conservation area needs collaboration from all stakeholders. WWF has initiated collaboration on handling human-elephant conflict with companies operating around the Tesso Nilo National Park. To help reduced human-elephant conflict in Tesso Nilo National Park and the proposed extension needs at least six Flying Squad teams. With the operation of two more flying squad teams, we hope that human-elephant conflict around Tesso Nilo National Park can be reduced.

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