Sabah adamant on keeping its wildlife

Posted on June 29, 2010. Filed under: Bio-diversity |

-The Star- KOTA KINABALU: Sabah will not budge from its stand that the state’s wildlife should remain in its natural habitat and not sent out to zoos.

State Tourism, Culture and Environment Minister Datuk Masidi Manjun said it would be irresponsible to relocate iconic wildlife such as the proboscis monkeys, Borneo pygmy elephants and orang utan.

“Moving them elsewhere will compromise the animals’ survival chances outside their home,” he told reporters on Monday evening after receiving a courtesy call from the Chinese International Travel Service United from China here.

“We may consider some animals but to ask for the iconic animals from Sabah is really out of the question.”

Masidi stressed that it was not a case of Sabah not wanting to give the animals but because they wanted to keep them in their natural habitat.

“Sabah understands the special needs of these animals, so it will be irresponsible for us to send them out of the state knowing that their chances of survival will be very much compromised,” he added.

He was responding to a statement by Malaysian Zoological Association president Ismail Hutson who had said that Zoo Negara visitors would be able to view more exotic wildlife from Sabah as preparation was underway to receive the Borneo pygmy elephants, proboscis monkeys, orang utan and hornbills.

Masidi said there has been no official request from the association or other parties pertaining to the matter.

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