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Petition for Indonesian government to save Sumatran rhino garners global support

Sumatran rhino calf wallowing in mud in Way Kambas, Sumatra, Indonesia. Photo by Rhett A. Butler for

  • More than 100,000 people have signed an online petition to Indonesian President Joko Widodo to do more to save the critically endangered Sumatran rhino from extinction.
  • The petition was launched several days after a Mongabay series looked into the current state of the species, which may number as few as 30 individuals in the wild.
  • The series also identified the Indonesian government as hampering much-needed efforts to stave off the disappearance of the Sumatran rhino from poaching and habitat loss.

Over 100,000 people have signed an online petition calling for the Indonesian government to do more to save the Sumatran rhino from extinction.

“It is imperative [that] the Indonesian government act now to assist conservationist[s] in their effort to save the Sumatran rhino,” the petition says. “Any more delays puts their future in jeopardy.”

The petition, “Act Now to Save the Sumatran Rhino,” is seeking 110,000 signatures before it gets delivered to President Joko “Jokowi” Widodo. At the time this article was published, it had already garnered global support from 101,471 people.

“Without the rhino, the character of the forest will change, setting off cascades of loss in other species as well,” one of the online supporters wrote.

The petition was launched on Nov. 20, less than two weeks after the publication of the last article in Mongabay’s three-part series looking into the current state of the critically endangered Sumatran rhino (Dicerorhinus sumatrensis), a species that is on the brink of extinction.

Ratu the rhino. Photo courtesy of the Sumatran Rhino Sanctuary

The series looked into the current state of the species and how efforts to protect it have fared so far. The first part suggested there were fewer than 30 individuals left in the wild. The second article highlighted the overwhelming consensus among experts that captive breeding is a top solution to save the population. The final article in the series showed how efforts to save the species faced roadblocks from the Indonesian government.

Poaching and loss of habitat from deforestation and mining have hammered the population of the Sumatran rhino, a solitary creature that typically lives in dense mountain forests.

Banner image: Rhino calf wallowing in mud at the Sumatran Rhino Sanctuary.

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