Now is Young People’s Turn to Tackle Widllife Trade

CIREBON, WEST JAVA - PROFAUNA Indonesia's West Java representatives engaged the youngsters of Cirebon to take an active role in combating wildlife trade. PROFAUNA's advisory board member, Dr. Herlina Agustin, MT said that today there are a number of activities performed by young people which contribute to the raging widllife poaching in the wild. 

"Today many wild animals are being kept as pets by school or university students, then they form communities and call themselves 'animal lovers', 'loris lovers', 'falconry', or other names. They think that they look cool with their collection, this is not right!" said Herlina in front of Youth Environmental Award 2016 participants in kreo, Cirebon (23/7).

She then added that young people should be much more aware that the growing trend of such unseemly communities and harmful hobby of collecting animals foster the demands for wild animal captured from their natural habitat. "High demand for wild animals can only be met by capturing more animals from the wild, thus driving the animals even closer to extinction," emphasize her.

In her presentation, Herlina also explained that there are some species that have been heavily poached and traded like slow loris, langur, eagles, salmon-crested cockatoo, and Javan gibbon. These animals and their kind can be quite easily found online or in markets, although they are increasingly rare in their natural habitat.

There are many efforts that can be taken by young people to combat wildlife trade, including not keeping wild animals as pets and proactively reporting illegal wildlife trade or ownership to the authorities.

"We can report succh illicit acts to our local Nature Conservation Agency (BKSDA) through their GAKKUM app or to PROFAUNA Indonesia," added her. Herlina later explained that active participation in reporting wildlife trade or exploitation is an expression of our care to the nature.

"Wildlife trade also occur in Cirebon, and we have to pay serious attention to this  issue especially because Cirebon acts as an interprovince line. In Cirebon, there are several small forests inhabited by wild animals, and poachers are likely to hunt animals in there to fulfil traders' demands."

The 55 participants, environmental activists from different high schools across Cirebon, found PROFAUNA's sharing very though-provoking. Some of them said that they often see animals being sold in markets, even one student lives near a wild animals collector.

"I know that what my neighbor does is against the law, but I just knew that I can help the animals by only as easy as reporting it to the authority or PROFAUNA," said Kiki, one of Youth Environmental Award 2016 participants.

The Youth Environmental Award 2016 is held by Sanggar Lingkungan Hidup Cirebon, a group of environmental communities. This event started in February 2016, attended by 'green' senior high schools in Cirebon. The event's highlight would be a camp on 23-24 July 2016 for five schools which make it to the final round.

© 2003 - ProFauna Indonesia

ProFauna Indonesia is an Indonesian society for the protection of
wild animals and their habitats