KOTA KINABALU, Jan 20, 2016:
The Sabah Wildlife Department (SWD) is still clueless over the dead adult sun bear found floating in the Kinabatangan River by two Swedish tourists last week.
Disclosing that the department was still investigating, SWD director William Baya said they were trying to get to the bottom of the case with the help of police.
“We have no clues or any suspects yet,” he said when contacted.
In earlier reports, Swedish couple, Tommy Eriksson and wife, Teuta Hajra, photographed the floating carcass about 6pm on Jan 16 and shared the images with the Bornean Sun Bear Conservation Centre (BSBCC) chief executive officer Wong Siew Te.
The carcass, which appeared to be the lower part of a sun bear that had been cut into half with both the hind paws missing, was sent to the SWD for investigation.
“The bear was killed in cold blood, and the act is illegal and should be stopped immediately,” said Wong.
He added that the sun bear population was already seriously threatened by the loss of the rainforest and they had lost their habitat due to opening of land for agriculture.
Wong noted that the remaining population was very fragile and faced extinction.
“Sun bears play many important roles in maintaining a healthy forest ecosystem,” said Wong.