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New species documented at Tawau Hills Park

PROMOTING WILDLIFE … Pang (back row, 7th left) and Shavez (back row, 6th left) together with the wildlife survey team which includes members from 1StopWildlife Borneo among others.

31st January, 2018

TAWAU: A team of citizen scientists and avid wildlife enthusiasts carrying out a wildlife survey at Tawau Hills Park has documented new findings of lesser-known species of bats, frogs, birds inhabiting the biodiverse-rich rainforest sanctuary.

“The expedition has contributed significant findings noteworthy for the park. Up to date, there are more than 300 species of birds, 70 species of frogs and 90 species of mammals documented at the park,” said founder of 1StopWildlife Borneo, Shavez Cheema. Speaking at the recent dinner reception hosted by Assistant State Tourism Minister, Datuk Pang Yuk Ming in support for the expedition, Shavez said the wildlife survey was carried out by 1StopBorneoWildlife who are working closely with Sabah Parks on publishing a book on the Tawau Hills Park.

“It’s heartening to see strong interest, support and recognition from locals as well as foreigners on the importance to conserve and protect the natural environment and its inhabitants,” he added.

The team currently carrying out activities in documenting wildlife at the park during the 10-day expedition from Jan 23-31 also received assistance provided by experienced guides from local tourism company, Adventure Alternative Borneo on conservation work and developing new strategies for ecotourism in the park.

Among the main objectives of the expedition is aimed at promoting Tawau Hills Park as one of the main eco-tourism destination and conservation sanctuaries in Sabah.

“We deeply appreciate the contribution of the Tourism Ministry and Pang, who is also one of the main players keen to ensure the success of this wildlife expedition, and also a vocal supporter for conservation and education,” said Shavez.

He underlined the commitment of the team to further conduct biodiversity inventory at the park regularly, as per part of the vision of 1StopWildlife Borneo in promoting wildlife conservation, education, and tourism The expedition comprised of various stakeholders, including scientists from University College Sabah Foundation, University Kebangsaan Malaysia and Universiti Malaysia Sabah (UMS), professional wildlife photographers (Chien Lee & Lars Fehlandt) and representatives from tourism companies. – Mohd Izham Hashim

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