Bornean bantengs feeling the heat in logged forests, study finds

first_imgA recent study shows that Bornean bantengs in recently logged forests in Malaysia’s Sabah state have become less active during the daytime in response to the hotter temperatures brought on by there being fewer trees providing shade.Banteng herds living in forests with more regrowth continue to be active throughout the day as they have more shade and refuge.The paper’s researchers suggest that steps must be taken to reduce the stress upon bantengs, such as limiting disturbance during key times of activity and maintaining blocks of mature forest. The endangered wild cattle of Malaysian Borneo have eased back on their daytime activities because of higher temperatures brought on by loss of forest cover — a finding that has important implications for the species’ well-being.The findings, in a report published April 12 in the open-access journal PLOS One, showed that recently logged forests in Sabah state were hotter, reaching temperatures of up to 44 degrees Celsius (111 degrees Fahrenheit), for longer periods of time in the day than forests that had experienced regrowth for longer. This temperature differential, it turns out, affects the activity of the Bornean banteng (Bos javanicus lowi).The researchers, from the Sabah Wildlife Department and the Danau Girang Field Centre (DGFC) in Malaysia, Cardiff University in the U.K., and the Leibniz Institute for Zoo and Wildlife Research in Germany, carried out the study from 2011 to 2013 in three secondary protected forests in Sabah: the Malua Forest Reserve, Maliau Basin Conservation Area Buffer Zones, and Tabin Wildlife Reserve.Bantengs foraging in the early morning in an open degraded area. Image courtesy of Danau Girang Field Centre (DGFC).Each of these areas has experienced extensive and repeated removal of timber, and each also have internal logging road networks with exposed and compacted substrate resulting from the use of heavy machinery. The last logging activities recorded in these areas occurred six, 17 and 23 years ago, respectively.The paper found that banteng populations in the more recently logged forests tended to show reduced activity and to avoid degraded areas during the hot hours between dawn and dusk.“[This is] possibly to avoid thermal stress which can be fatal [for the bantengs],” Penny Gardner, lead author and program manager of banteng research at the DGFC, said in a statement.High temperatures are detrimental to warm-blooded animals like bantengs. They affect metabolic processes and physio-biochemical processes, increasing methane emissions and water intake, and decreasing urination, lactation and body weight, the researchers noted.While cattle native to warm environments have adapted physiologically, the researchers suggested that these traits would not be sufficient to mitigate heat stress as the animals prefer to seek out the natural shade of trees.Bantengs resting under dense canopy during the middle of the day. Image courtesy of Danau Girang Field Centre (DGFC).Banteng populations living in forests with a longer period of regrowth continue to be active throughout the day, as they have more shade and refuge, the study found.However, as their main food — grasses, ferns and shrubs — are commonly found on forest edges, the bantengs run a higher risk being hunted, said Benoit Goossens, a co-author of the study and director of the DGFC.“Steps taken to reduce stress upon bantengs could include limiting disturbance during key times of activity and maintaining blocks of mature forest,” Goossens said.He said these recommendations and others would be outlined in the Banteng Action Plan, currently being drafted by the Malaysian government.Bantengs in Sabah have long been threatened by loss and fragmentation of habitat, as well as intensive poaching. They are considered the most endangered large mammal in the region, numbering fewer than 400 individuals across the whole of Malaysian Borneo. Scientists have warned that the species could go extinct within 20 years at the current rate of decline.The banteng is a species in Sabah, and possession of the wild cattle or its parts can result in jail time and fines of at least 50,000 Malaysian ringgit ($12,840).Still, Sabah is a global hotspot of forest degradation, due in large part to the oil palm and timber industries. In 2009, only 8 percent of protected areas there comprised intact forest that had not been logged since the 1970s.A previous study showed that bantengs displayed signs of adaptability to post-timber harvesting conditions and could persist in commercial forests, frequently using old logging roads, access roads used by vehicles, and degraded open areas to forage and congregate.Bantengs foraging in an open degraded area in the early hours of the day. Image courtesy of Danau Girang Field Centre (DGFC).FEEDBACK: Use this form to send a message to the author of this post. If you want to post a public comment, you can do that at the bottom of the page. Animals, Cattle, Conservation, Deforestation, Endangered Species, Environment, forest degradation, Forest Destruction, Forest Loss, Forests, Mammals, Protected Areas, Rainforest Animals, Rainforest Deforestation, Rainforest Destruction, Rainforest Logging, Secondary Forests, Tropical Deforestation, Tropical Forests, Wildlife, Wildlife Conservation Article published by Basten Gokkoncenter_img Popular in the CommunitySponsoredSponsoredOrangutan found tortured and decapitated prompts Indonesia probeEMGIES17 Jan, 2018We will never know the full extent of what this poor Orangutan went through before he died, the same must be done to this evil perpetrator(s) they don’t deserve the air that they breathe this has truly upset me and I wonder for the future for these wonderful creatures. So called ‘Mankind’ has a lot to answer for we are the only ones ruining this world I prefer animals to humans any day of the week.What makes community ecotourism succeed? In Madagascar, location, location, locationScissors1dOther countries should also learn and try to incorporateWhy you should care about the current wave of mass extinctions (commentary)Processor1 DecAfter all, there is no infinite anything in the whole galaxy!Infinite stupidity, right here on earth.The wildlife trade threatens people and animals alike (commentary)Anchor3dUnfortunately I feel The Chinese have no compassion for any living animal. They are a cruel country that as we knowneatbeverything that moves and do not humanily kill these poor animals and insects. They have no health and safety on their markets and they then contract these diseases. Maybe its karma maybe they should look at the way they live and stop using animals for all there so called remedies. 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Focus on deforestation this year (commentary)Bullhorn4dLies and more leisSponsoredSponsoredCoke is again the biggest culprit behind plastic waste in the PhilippinesGrapes7 NovOnce again the article blames companies for the actions of individuals. It is individuals that buy these products, it is individuals that dispose of them improperly. If we want to change it, we have to change, not just create bad guys to blame.Brazilian response to Bolsonaro policies and Amazon fires growsCar4 SepThank you for this excellent report. I feel overwhelmed by the ecocidal intent of the Bolsonaro government in the name of ‘developing’ their ‘God-given’ resources.U.S. allocates first of $30M in grants for forest conservation in SumatraPlanet4dcarrot hella thick ;)Melting Arctic sea ice may be altering winds, weather at equator: studyleftylarry30 JanThe Arctic sea ice seems to be recovering this winter as per the last 10-12 years, good news.Malaysia has the world’s highest deforestation rate, reveals Google forest mapBone27 Sep, 2018Who you’re trying to fool with selective data revelation?You can’t hide the truth if you show historical deforestation for all countries, especially in Europe from 1800s to this day. WorldBank has a good wholesome data on this.Mass tree planting along India’s Cauvery River has scientists worriedSurendra Nekkanti23 JanHi Mongabay. Good effort trying to be objective in this article. I would like to give a constructive feedback which could help in clearing things up.1. It is mentioned that planting trees in village common lands will have negative affects socially and ecologically. There is no need to even have to agree or disagree with it, because, you also mentioned the fact that Cauvery Calling aims to plant trees only in the private lands of the farmers. So, plantation in the common lands doesn’t come into the picture.2.I don’t see that the ecologists are totally against this project, but just they they have some concerns, mainly in terms of what species of trees will be planted. And because there was no direct communication between the ecologists and Isha Foundation, it was not possible for them to address the concerns. As you seem to have spoken with an Isha spokesperson, if you could connect the concerned parties, it would be great, because I see that the ecologists are genuinely interested in making sure things are done the right way.May we all come together and make things happen.Rare Amazon bush dogs caught on camera in BoliviaCarrot1 Feba very good iniciative to be fallowed by the ranchers all overSponsoredlast_img read more