Official Magazine of the Nature Society (Singapore)
the Greater Mousedeer
Main article | Lessons from failed reintroduction | Plans to reintroduce the Greater Mousedeer
by Lim Kim Seng
Member, Conservation Sub-committee
Nature Society (Singapore)
How could one reintroduce agile tree-climbing predators like the Leopard Cat, Civet Cat and Binturong into our last surviving forest ecosystem when many of its residents are already suffering low (and unsustainable) population levels? You just need one bite here and another bite there and you will have one more local animal or plant on the extinct list!
Even worse, the areas selected for reintroduction are relatively rich in species diversity. Reckless release of these animals will decimate this diversity.
The impact of the herbivorous mousedeer and the insectivorous pangolin may be less severe, but a botanist and an entomologist may beg to differ! Nobody has an idea of how these reintroductions affect our depleted forests.
But a re-think about reintroductions has taken place and we are glad to see that the NPB are restricting the release programme to only the Greater Mousedeer. This restraint and monitoring, if coupled with determined conservation, even regeneration of its habitat, will go a long way to ensure that the Greater Mousedeer will live happily in our forests again.
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