Mt. Sinabung eruptions threaten endangered species

The Mount Sinabung eruptions in Karo regency have not only had an adverse impact on the local economy, but also on the rare wildlife surviving around the mountain as well as the traditional customs of the surrounding communities.

Among the rare animals that descended from the mountain was a clouded leopard, which was found dead in a chili farm in Kuta Gugung village, a 10-meter long python, which descended on Payung village, located within a 4-kilometer radius of the volcano and a Sumatran serow, which was found in Beras Tepu village in Simpang Empat district, North Sumatra Natural Resources Conservation Agency (BKSDA) reported.

Based on the data at the North Sumatra BKSDA in 1990, only 32 Sumatran serow were documented living in the wild both in the Bukit Barisan mountain range region and the Bukit Batabur protected forest in Riau.

According to North Sumatra BKSDA head Istanto, the rare species is believed to have descended from the Mt. Sinabung because of increased volcanic activity or due to a lack of food. Villagers said that the animal was still alive when it was found on Jan. 17, but was in a weakened condition. The villagers found the Sumatran serow sitting feebly behind a house next to a farm.

Go to The Jakarta Post for detailed information.

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