Endangered black hornbill rescued from captivity

SFC officers about to release the hornbill at Bukit Hitam Nature Reserve, Limbang.

LIMBANG, Sept 29: Sarawak Forestry Corporation (SFC) rescued an endangered black hornbill from captivity after receiving a public tip-off.

Its enforcement officers on Sept 27 sprang into action upon getting the information and visited a resident at Kampung Sayung here who was keeping the hornbill.

The owner told enforcement officers that he had kept the hornbill, which is a protected species, since it was young and he did not know where to send the hornbill.

The rescued hornbill was in good health and was immediately released in Bukit Hitam Nature Reserve, Limbang.

In a statement today, SFC said all hornbills are protected under the Sarawak Wildlife Protection Ordinance (1998). Any person who hunts, kills, captures, sells or is in possession of any totally protected animal (and protected animal) shall be guilty of an offence.

The penalty for keeping totally protected animals is five years’ jail and a fine of up to RM50,000, while for protected animals, the offender is liable to two years’ jail and a RM25,000 fine.

“This successful rescue shows SFC is seriously committed to tackling illegal wildlife trade and wildlife crime.

“We will continuously take actions to end poaching and trafficking of protected species of flora and fauna in Sarawak,” said SFC CEO Zolkipli Mohamad Aton.

SFC also extended its gratitude to members of the public who have assisted authorities in curtailing illegal wildlife trading as well as illegal logging in Sarawak.

Members of the public may lodge a report with SFC or Sarawak Forest Department if they found anyone keeping or selling totally protected animals.

Those with information on similar illegal activities may call the SFC hotlines at 016-8565564/019-8859996 (Kuching), 019-8883561 (Sibu), 019-8223449/019-8332737 (Bintulu) and 019-8290994/018-9799778 (Miri). — DayakDaily