September 24, 2012
On an occasional basis mongabay.com highlights a video or film. Any views expressed in these clips are those of the filmmaker/producer and do not necessarily reflect the views or endorsement of mongabay.com.
In May of this year, Dutch filmmaker Marten Slothouwer and his team trudged up Sumatra's northern-most mountains with video camera equipment in hand, hoping to capture rare and cryptic species for the world to see. Already the camera trapping initiative, dubbed Eyes on Leuser, has taken incredible footage in the region's imperiled lowland rainforest, but the group hoped now to capture mountain endemics.
The video below highlights their efforts with over twenty distinct mammals and birds, including nine that are threatened with extinction and four others that are listed as Near Threatened by the IUCN Red List. Notably the initiative captured the Sumatran hog badger, which may be a unique species endemic to the island; the Aceh pheasant; the Sumatran serow; and high-living Sumatran tigers at 2,300 meters (7,545 feet).
Last month, scientists, also using camera traps, confirmed that a small population of Sumatran rhinos still inhabits the Leuser ecosystem. But Leuser is under incredible pressure due to logging, monoculture plantations like palm oil, poaching, roads, and encroachment into protected areas. The forest is the last place on Earth where orangutans, elephants, tigers, and rhinos still survive in the same habitat, though all species are considered Critically Endangered.
Animals in the video (in order of appearance):
Southern pig-tailed macaque (Macaca nemestrina), Vulnerable
Sumatran elephant (Elephas maximus sumatranus), Critically Endangered
Aceh pheasant (Lophura hoogerwerfi), Vulnerable
Sumatran peacock-pheasant (Polyplectron chalcurum scutulatum), Least Concern
Sumatran hog badger (Arctonyx hoevenii), Near Threatened
Yellow-throated marten (Martes flavigula), Last Concern
Sun bear (Ursus malayanus), Vulnerable
Banded linsang (Prionodon linsang), Least Concern
Long-billed partridge (Rhizothera longirostris), Near Threatened
Roll's partridge (Arborophila rolli), Least Concern
Red-billed partridge (Arborophila rubrirostris), Least Concern
Masked palm civet (Paguma larvata), Least Concern
Binturong (Arctictis binturong), Vulnerable
Asian golden cats (Pardofelis temminckii), Near Threatened
Marbled cat (Pardofelis marmorata), Vulnerable
Cream-coloured giant squirrel (Ratufa affinis), Near Threatened
Shiny whistling thrush (Myophonus melanurus), Least Concern
Brown-winged Whistling Thrush (Myophonus castaneus), Near Threatened
Common muntjac (Muntiacus muntjak), Least Concern
Sumatran serow (Capricornis sumatraensis), Vulnerable
Sumatran tiger (Panthera tigris sumatrae), Critically Endangered
Ground squirrel (???)