Forest fragments surprising havens for wildlife
Destruction of tropical rainforests reduces many unprotected habitats to small fragments of remnant forests within agricultural lands, and to date, these remnant forest fragments have been largely disregarded as wildlife habitat.
Researchers conducted camera trap surveys within Sumatra's Bukit Barisan Selatan National Park and five surrounding remnant forest fragments, finding 28 mammal species in the protected forest and 21 in the fragments—including critically endangered species such as Sunda pangolin (Manis javanica) and Sumatran tiger (Panthera tigris sumatrae), along with species of conservation concern such as marbled cat (Pardofelis marmorata) and Asiatic golden cat (Pardofelis temminckii).
The biodiversity found within the fragments suggests that these small patches of remnant forest may have conservation value to certain mammal species and indicates the importance of further research into the role these habitats may play in landscape-level, multispecies conservation planning.
More information: Sarah R Weiskopf et al, The conservation value of forest fragments in the increasingly agrarian landscape of Sumatra, Environmental Conservation (2019). DOI: 10.1017/S0376892919000195
Provided by Wildlife Conservation Society