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Rare hornbills nesting in handmade ‘nest boxes’

190219_nest
SUCCESSFUL NEST BOX … Pied hornbills spotted nesting at the handmade nest box at Sukau River Homestay at Kinabatangan.

19th February, 2019

By MOHD IZHAM HASHIM

SUKAU: Homestay owners and researchers received another pleasant surprise when Pied hornbills were spotted nesting at handmade ‘nest boxes’ at a local homestay at Sukau, Kinabatangan wildlife reserve.

The sighting of wild hornbills nesting at nest boxes was a real treat for guests at Sukau River Homestay, especially its owner, Maria who was involved in the project with 1StopBorneoWildlife, a local environmental advocacy group.

“It’s been confirmed that the nest boxes are working out for wild hornbills; this is great development and it’s really uplifting to see our efforts come to fruition,” said founder of 1StopBorneowildlife, Shavez Cheema.

Delighted by the development, Shavez said more nest boxes will be set up at selected spots in Tawau to increase breeding opportunities for Borneo’s endemic hornbill species.

He noted there has been more success with more endangered species by award-winning researcher, Ravinder Kaur and her team who has been extensively conducting research on hornbills in the Kinabatangan rainforest reserve.

Previously in 2017, endangered Rhinosaurus Hornbills were spotted using artificial nesting boxes, designed by Ravinder Kaur who was awarded the United Kingdom (UK) Future Conservationist Award by the Conservationist Leadership programme, through her efforts and her team.

She was the first Malaysian to have received the UK-based award for her ground-breaking PHD research on hornbills.

“Since the project started, there’s been dozens of nest boxes set up by Ravinder and her team to provide more breeding options for hornbills,” said Shavez.

Being the world’s first perfect nest box for hornbill species, the nest-boxes were visited by four species of hornbill: Rhinoceros, Oriental Pied (Anthracoceros Albirostris), Wrinkled (Rhabdotorrhinus corrugatus) and Bushy-crested (Anorhinus galeritu).

Together with her team, Ravinder, a research assistant at Universiti Malaysia (UM) worked with her team to find solutions to nest-hole crisis suffered by hornbill species – the team is also supported by French non-governmental organisation HUTAN based in the Kinabatangan.

   
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