Here is a summary of all the activities by which we are trying to achieve success in the goals of the program.
Goal 1. Cooperation with local governmental agencies on enforcement of laws protecting slow lorises.
Confiscation of illegally sold or kept slow loris:
The Kukang Rescue team and members of SPORC talking to the former owner of the lorises during confiscation in the Balige city (Source: Čižmářová, 2016)
In addition to operating the rescue and rehabilitation centre, we cooperate on better enforcement of laws against the illegal trade in Greater slow lorises with the local governmental agency BBKSDA North Sumatra (The Natural Resources Conservation Agency). Under agreement, we cooperate with BBKSDA North Sumatra, concretely with their SPORC unit (Forest Police Rapid Response Unit), on confiscation of illegally sold or kept slow loris.
Confiscation od the young Greater slow loris (Source: Čižmářová, 2016)
Goal 2. Operation of a rescue and rehabilitation centre for confiscated slow lorises.
Rehabilitation of slow lorises:
A facility where confiscated slow lorises can be transported and where they are given appropriate care is necessary. In Sumatra, a similar rescue and rehabilitation centre allowing to accept confiscated slow lorises had been missing until these days. Absence of such facilities is a huge obstacle for competent authorities in an effective enforcement of relevant laws.
As a part of The Kukang Rescue Program, we have built such a rescue and rehabilitation centre in the village of Bandar Baru. It is located only 1.5 hour from the capital city of Sumatra, Medan. Therefore, we have a strategically easy access to the offices of governmental authorities, transportation, well-equipped hospitals and laboratories. The rescue and rehabilitation centre currently consists of a small house for the Kukang team, an office with sanitary facilities, a clinic with isolation and a quarantine. Nowadays, the clinic is well equipped with basic medical and surgery tools, isolation boxes, and an examination table which corresponds to the veterinary standard. The quarantine is elevated half a meter above the ground because of hygiene and to minimize any parasite transmission risk, and has its own cleaning system with septic. There is still enough space on our land to be used for further planned and needed development.
Greater slow loris in the quarantine (Source: Čižmářová, 2016)
After their acceptance, slow lorises undergo a basic veterinary examination. If it is not necessary to keep slow lorises in isolation, they are translocated into the quarantine for a necessarily long time. The quarantine is followed by a rehabilitation process that, in an ideal case, will end with releasing slow lorises back into the wild.
Dental examination (Source: Čižmářová, 2016)
Goal 3. Raising awareness about the illegal trade in animals and about protection of slow lorises.
Awareness-raising lectures at local schools:
A research of International Animal Rescue (Yayasan IAR Indonesia) of slow loris owners revealed that students make up a large proportion of the people likely to buy a slow loris. That is why we organize series of awareness-raising events at local schools.
Lecture at the school SMA Katolik Bandar Baru (Source: Čižmářová, 2016)
Main purpose of these events are lectures, discussions with students and simple knowledge competitions. At the beginning, all students fill out a simple questionnaire by which we evaluate their knowledge and attitude to the nature conservation. The students complete the same questionnaire also after the lecture. By comparing it with a questionnaire completed at the beginning of the event we then try to verify their focus and the effectiveness of the event . The results help us improve the methodology of the awareness-raising events.
Awarded students from the school SMP Negeri 2 Sibolangit (Source: Čižmářová, 2016)
The anti-conflict team and work with farmers:
The anti-conflict team works with farmers who live and work directly on the border of a protected area. Farms of these people are often visited by wild animals destroying their farm crops. The goal of the anti-conflict team is to prevent conflicts between farmers, slow lorises and other wild animals. Currently, we are targetting the village of Rajah Berneh bordering with the famous tourist Sibayak volcano, the Berastagi area, specifically Tongkoh area, known as an agricultural locality. We are further focusing on a village of Kuta Male bordering the protected area of the Gunung Leuser ecosystem, and we have also visited an area neighboring with protected Cagar Alam forest near the rescue and rehabilitation centre.
Discussion with farmers in Rajah Berneh about their problems with wild animals (Source: Řezníčková, 2016)
In all the cases, we gained support of local mayors. In Rajah Berneh, we and its mayor even placed an informative sign about the illegality of hunting protected animal species. This sign also warns of the possible sanctions for violation of this law and is located in a strategic place where endangered species such as slow lorises, pangolins, hornbills and more are often hunted. The same sign has been also placed at the entrance to our rescue and rehabilitation centre.
Filling out the questionnaire with a farmer in Tongkoh (Source: Čižmářová, 2016)
Awareness-raising events in public places:
We organize awaraness-raising events in public places where a lot of people gather and these people could be potential future owners of a slow loris. The goal of these activities will be to inform the public about illegality of buying slow lorises as house pets and about unsuitability of slow lorises as pets via discussion and distribution of information leaflets.
Construction of the educational part of the rescue centre:
We plan to build also an educational part within the rescue centre. In this part of the centre, an awareness-raising program using cages with permanently handicapped individuals will take place. Slow lorises after confiscating have problems most often with their teeth as sellers pull or tear the teeth so that these animals become more suitable pets. Unfortunately, these individuals can never be released back into the wild. However, they can become ambassadors of their own species by helping educate people by sophisticated method. The aim is to highlight the protected status of slow lorises and the inappropriateness of keeping them as pets.
Internet campaign "I Am Not Your Toy!":
This worldwide campaign aims to stop the viral popularity rise of slow lorises as pets. The goal of the campaign "I Am Not Your Toy!" is to inform people about the background of these videos. The first step of this campaign was creating a short video which you can now watch on YouTube or on the Facebook page of the campaign. On our website, we have accompanied this video with extensive information explaining the ways how each one of us can act if we encounter the sharing of "cute" videos etc.. The campaign will also employ other modern tools like animations, drawings, videos etc.
Now you have the perfect opportunity to help us spread this campaign; we can join forces and take advantage of increasingly popular social networks and websites to spread awareness about animal conservation. Share our video or the entire campaign on your social networks and websites.
Goal 4. Building an Indonesian team which will implement most of the conservation activities associated with slow lorises.
Currently, the core of the Indonesian team consists of representatives of governmental agencies and individual employees. More details about the Indonesian team can be found here: Kukang team - Indonesia.