Dimas Teja Kusuma, a fourth-year undergraduate who received an Orang Utan Caring Scholarship in 2020 was pleasantly surprised when the abstract of his innovative research was accepted by the International Primate Society for presentation at their conference in Kuching, Malaysia in August. For an undergraduate from Indonesia to present at the IPS is a prestigious honor. His travel to Kuching is being supported by the Orang Utan Republik Foundation and the Borneo Nature Foundation to enable him to share his findings in person.
His study focused on the activity patterns of orangutans (Pongo pygmaeus wurmbii) and pig-tailed macaques (Macacanemistrina) in the peatlands of Sebangau National Park in Central Kalimantan. This unique area serves as a natural laboratory for peat swamp forest research, providing an excellent opportunity to gain insights into the behavior and ecological interactions of these remarkable creatures.
Dimas positions camera trap for wildlife monitoring
Dimas's research employed camera traps; a non-invasive technology increasingly used in wildlife monitoring. Camera traps have proven to be innovative and useful tools for researchers in wildlife and environmental management. They provide valuable information for presence studies, population estimation, wildlife behavior studies, and interspecies interaction studies. By utilizing this technology, Dimas quantified the degree of overlapping behaviors of orangutans and pig-tailed macaques in Sebangau National Park. Of interest was the finding that female orangutans were observed at the same strata near the ground as pig-tailed macaques. Usually, wild female orangutans and their young are known to be almost exclusively arboreal to avoid predators thus this finding provides a new insight into the foraging movements of females in this region.
Dimas and other researchers collect data from the camera trap
OURF plans to share more of the results of his research entitled, “Overlap of Activity Patterns Between Orangutans (Pongo pygmaeus wurmbii) and Pig-tailed Macaques (Macaca nemistrina) from Camera-trap Data in the Nature Laboratory of Peat Swamp Forest in Sebangau National Park” in a future newsletter.