A female Asian golden cat shows its teeth inside a habituation cage at Bukit Barisan Selatan National Park in Lampuung on Dec 9. (JG Photo/Yudha Baskoro)

Golden Felines Return to The Wild

BY :YUDHA BASKORO

DECEMBER 11, 2020

The West Java Natural Resources Conservation Agency (BKSDA Jawa Barat) and the Balai Besar Bukit Barisan Selatan National Park (TNBBS) have released two Asian golden cats (Catopuma temminckii) back into the wild in the Bukit Barisan Selatan National Park conservation forest in Lampung, the southern tip of the island of Sumatra, on Dec 9 following their rescue from illegal traders.  

The National Police in Jakarta initially confiscated these felines in Depok, West Java, two years ago. The Animal Sanctuary Trust Indonesia (ASTI) had taken care of the cats since then before their eventual return to their habitat.

The golden cat's natural habitat is the Bukit Barisan Selatan National Park, which covers a 356,800-hectare jungle area that stretches from Tanggamus and West Lampung districts in Lampung to Kaur district in Bengkulu.

An animal rescue team went to the national park on Tuesday with the two cats. The team kept the cats in a habituation cage in the jungle for one day before releasing them to let the cats acclimate to the jungle situated between 1,100 to 3,738 meters above sea level. 

The population of Asian golden cat is severely decreasing due to poaching. The exotic animal is prized by locals who believe they have a delicious and tender flesh. Their bones are also used as medicine. Their skins are also illegally traded on the black market. The myth says that burning a single golden cat fur can repel a tiger. 

The Asian golden cat is listed as critically endangered by the International Union for Conservation of Nature. The species is also protected under Indonesian law.

Imam Arifin, a veterinarian from International Animal Rescue blows an anesthesia rehabilitation cage in Animal Sanctuary Trust Indonesia in Bogor, West Java on Monday (07/12). (JG Photo/Yudha Baskoro)
Imam Arifin, a veterinarian from Yayasan Inisiasi Alam Rehabilitasi Indonesia, blows an anesthesia dart toward on of the Asian golden cat at a rehabilitation center managed by Animal Sanctuary Trust Indonesia in Bogor, West Java on Dec 7. (JG Photo/Yudha Baskoro)
A paramedic writes the Asian Golden Cat health statistic inside rehabilitation cage in Bogor, West Java on Monday (07/12). (JG Photo/Yudha Baskoro)
A veterinarian writes the Asian golden cat health statistic at a rehabilitation center in Bogor, West Java on Dec 7. (JG Photo/Yudha Baskoro)
A veterinarian injects a chip detector to a Asian Golden Cats before its release in rehabilitation cage in Bogor, West Java on Monday (07/12). (JG Photo/Yudha Baskoro)
A veterinarian injects a geolocation chip into the Asian golden cat's body at a rehabilitation center in Bogor, West Java on Dec 7. (JG Photo/Yudha Baskoro)
International Animal Rescue staff ride a rubber boat to cross Pemerihan river in Lampung on Tuesday (08/12). (JG Photo/Yudha Baskoro)
Animal rescue staff ride a rubber boat to cross the Pemerihan River in Lampung on Dec 8. (JG Photo/Yudha Baskoro)
International Animal Rescue staff carry a Asian Golden Cat cage in to the wild on Wednesday (09/12). (JG Photo/Yudha Baskoro)
Animal rescue staff carry an Asian golden cat cage into the jungle on Dec 9. (JG Photo/Yudha Baskoro)
A male Asian Golden Cats is seen inside a habituation cage in Bukit Barisan Selatan National Park in Lampung on Wednesday (09/12). (JG Photo/Yudha Baskoro)
A male Asian golden cat is seen inside a habituation cage in Bukit Barisan Selatan National Park in Lampung on Dec 9. (JG Photo/Yudha Baskoro)
International Animal Rescue staff checks the habituation cage at Bukit Barisan Selatan National Park in Lampung, on Wednesday (09/12). (JG Photo/Yudha Baskoro)
Animal rescue staff checks the habituation cage in Bukit Barisan Selatan National Park in Lampung on Dec 9. (JG Photo/Yudha Baskoro)
The male Asian Golden Cats is seen inside the habituation cage at Bukit Barisan Selatan National Park in Lampung on Tuesday (08/12). (JG Photo/Yudha Baskoro)
The male Asian golden cat is seen inside the habituation cage in Bukit Barisan Selatan National Park in Lampung on Dec 8. (JG Photo/Yudha Baskoro)
A male Asian Golden Cats is seen inside the habituation cage at Bukit Barisan Selatan National Park in Lampung on Tuesday (08/12). (JG Photo/Yudha Baskoro)
A male Asian golden cat is seen inside the habituation cage at Bukit Barisan Selatan National Park in Lampung on Dec 8. (JG Photo/Yudha Baskoro)
A vetenarian prepares a anesthesia outside the habituation cage at Bukit Barisan Selatan National Park in Lampung on Wednesday (09/12). (JG Photo/Yudha Baskoro)
A veterinarian prepares anesthesia shot outside the habituation cage in Bukit Barisan Selatan National Park in Lampung on Dec 9. (JG Photo/Yudha Baskoro)
A female Asian Golden Cats is seen inside the habituation cage at Bukit Barisan Selatan National Park in Lampung on Tuesday (08/12). (JG Photo/Yudha Baskoro)
A female Asian golden cat is seen inside the habituation cage in Bukit Barisan Selatan National Park in Lampung on Dec 8. (JG Photo/Yudha Baskoro)

 

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