Sarawak Forestry teams up with GOF in joint raids to check wildlife abuse


MIRI: The Sarawak Forestry Corporation (SFC) and the General Operations Force (GOF) are joining hands to carry out raids to deter the capture, sale and possession of wildlife in Sarawak.

SFC chief executive officer Zolkipli Mohamad Aton said the two agencies are cooperating to be more effective in tackling wildlife abuse in Sarawak.

During the past week, joint teams seized various live and slaughtered wildlife in Serian, Kota Samarahan and Batu Kawa during raids, he said in a press statement Monday (March 25).

Among the live animals seized were pythons and turtles while the slaughtered wildlife included deer, pythons, monitor lizards and turtles.

Zolkipli said tackling wildlife abuse in Sarawak is a challenging and arduous task, not only in terms of logistics but also in terms of the attitudes of many people.

"A large segment of the locals feels there is nothing wrong in capturing or eating wildlife.

"That is why we are also carrying out educational campaigns in longhouses, villages, markets and even schools on the need to conserve wildlife.

"Those in possession of wildlife must surrender it to us," he said.    

Since March 1, a series of regular raids has been carried out throughout Sarawak in a statewide operation against wildlife abuse.

Raids were carried out in the markets in Miri, Kuala Baram, Kuching, Kota Samarahan, Matang, Serian, Bau, Sibu, Julau, Selangau, Bintulu and Kidurong.

Rare animals seized from wildlife traders and keepers include Barred Eyed Owl, Buffy Fish Owl, Blue Crowned Hanging Parrot, Spotted Dove, other live birds, live terrapins such as the Bornean Terrapin, live tortoises, live pythons, slaughtered pythons and slaughtered wildboar parts.

Zolkipli said members of the public who have information on wildlife abuse can call the SFC hotlines.

The SFC hotlines are in Kuching (019-8859996, 016-8565564), Sibu (019-8190140, 019-8894474), Bintulu (019-8223449, 019-8332737), and Miri (019-8224566, 019-8290994).