Minggu, 13 Februari 2011

Seven Most Beautiful National Parks on Kalimantan Island, Indonesia

 by Yovita Siswati on 26/01/11 at 1:11 am

Like Sumatra and Java, Kalimantan Island is rich in natural resources. Located in the centre of Indonesian archipelago, the island comprises of very diverse ecosystem. Several national parks established on the island provide protection for various species of endangered animal.

Kayan Mentarang National Park

Located on “Apau Kayan” mountain trails plateau at the border between Indonesia and Malaysia, Kayan Mentarang National Park is the largest untouched rainforest on Kalimantan Island. With a total area of 1.6 million hectares, the park mainly consists of lowland rainforest. This park is the home of some protected species of mammal and bird including Bornean Gibbon, Proboscis Monkey, Clouded Leopard and Rhinoceros Hornbill. Thousands of people of the local tribes of Dayak and Punam often make their settlement inside the park. They live from shifting cultivation and hunting wildlife. Visitors may sometimes stay in their settlement.

Tanjung Putting National Park

Tanjung Putting National Park is the natural habitat of the famous endangered species of orangutan, a species of ape that bears close genetic relation with human.  For the rehabilitation of orangutan, four research centers have been established in the park. 29 species of mammal, 200 species of bird and 17 species of reptile endemic to the island of Kalimantan such as gibbons, leopard, hornbills, monitor lizard and pythons also make their home within this national park.

Totaling more than 400 thousand hectares, the park forms the largest protected swamp forest in South East Asia. The ecosystems consist of dry land, swamp, heath, mangrove and coastal forest.  In 1977, the park is declared as UNESCO Biosphere Reserve. Today, illegal mining, illegal logging and land conversion have damaged 40% of the total area of the park.

Kutai National Park

Lies to the north of the famous Mahakam River on the eastern coast of the island of Kalimantan only minutes away from the equator, Kutai National Park provides natural habitat for around two thousand Orangutans and several rare species of mammal, reptile and bird including the Malayan Bear, Proboscis Monkey and Sun Bird. The park is also the home of local tribe of Bugis. With total area of over 2,000 square kilometers, at least, there are four big lakes in the Park: Besar, Maau, Santan and Sirapan. Varieties of ecosystems include lowland rain forest, freshwater swamp and mangrove forest. The area of the forest had been protected since 1970s and in 1982 it was established as a national park. Despite its conservatory status, illegal logging continues to pose major threat on the survival of the park. In addition to human encroachment, a great fire occurred in 1982 had also destroyed almost 60% of the forest.

Read more: http://trifter.com/usa-canada/california/seven-most-beautiful-national-parks-on-kalimantan-island-indonesia/#ixzz1DTYVx0Pw
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