Monday April 16, 2007
US group offers orang utan aid to Sabah
SANDAKAN: The Sabah Forestry Department received a RM700,000 (US$200,000) contribution from Arcus Foundation, a non-governmental organisation in the United States, to rehabilitate damaged areas of the Ulu Segama Forest Reserve in Lahad Datu.
Its director Datuk Sam Manan received the contribution from Arcus Foundation’s representative in Malaysia Cynthia Ong here recently.
Manan said the money would be used to plant new trees in the forest reserve, parts of which had been encroached and stripped of vegetation for agriculture.
The 25,000ha Ulu Segama Forest Reserve is known among wildlife experts as an important habitat for orang utan. It is believed that there are some 3,000 orang utan in the forest reserve which borders the Lembah Danum forest rehabilitation area.
He said the department was working together with the Sabah Foundation and local NGOs to rehabilitate the orang utan habitat in the forest reserve.
In a statement, Arcus Foundation executive director Urvashi Vaid said the foundation was pleased to help the Sabah Forestry Department.
She said the project would be the first orang utan project supported by Arcus under its Great Apes Funding Programme. Other conservation projects it is funding are those to help gorillas and chimpanzees. – Bernama