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Conservationists to create blueprint for saving Malaysia's elephants
Date:11/28/2012

Saving the Asian elephant in Malaysia will be the focus of an upcoming workshop at the Institute of Biological Diversity in Krau Wildlife Reserve, Malaysia (from 29 November-1 December, 2012), according to the Malaysian Department of Wildlife and National Parks and the Wildlife Conservation Society.

The gatheringthe first of its kind in Malaysia for wild elephantswill bring together more than 60 participants, including stakeholders from the logging industry, oil palm developers, town and country planners, conservationists, and representatives from NGOs, government agencies, academia, and corporations.

One of the primary goals of the workshop will be the establishment of a "Managed Elephant Range" within the central forest spine of Peninsular Malaysia, a region known to contain the largest remaining population of wild elephants in Southeast Asia. Within this range, viable populations of elephants can move unhindered through the native forest core. Other workshop goals include: providing nearby communities with the tools needed for reducing human-elephant conflicts; and increasing awareness and tolerance for Malaysia's elephants.

"We are really happy with the response given by the various stakeholders and the willingness of all of them to come together and work even across the weekend to try and look for solutions to save Malaysia's largest mammal," said Dato Rasid, Director-General, Department of Wildlife and National Parks, Malaysia. "Furthermore, with the input of renowned elephant conservationists and scientists, we know that the solution will include biological requirements for the species and this indeed is very important."

Dr. Melvin Gumal, Director of Malaysia Program, Wildlife Conservation Society, said: "The workshop has the potential to produce the most current, relevant, science-based blueprint to save this species in Peninsular Malaysia. There is much hope as the plan is not developed in a silo, but in discuss
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Contact: John Delaney
jdelaney@wcs.org
718-220-3275
Wildlife Conservation Society
Source:Eurekalert

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