Trees are growingThe first half of 2016 was extremely warm in northern Sumatra, with almost no rain at all.
Hence in April and May, our field teams mainly focused their efforts on maintenance of the seedling nurseries and previously-planted trees in the restoration sites, attempting to reduce the effects of the drought.
They used special techniques to maintain humidity around the seedlings, and reported an 80% survival rate – a testament to their efforts.
Meanwhile, our teams also worked in close cooperation with the Gunung Leuser National Park government office, and a community group responsible for encroaching around 200 hectares of forest inside the national park.
After long negotiations, the community group agreed to restore these 200 hectares with our technical support and under the control of the park authority and rangers. The forest will be back in a few years from now while this group will be provided with alternative livelihoods in order to reconcile nature conservation and human sustainable development goals.
In June, the rainy season started, a great relief for our nurseries managers who take care of more than 65,000 seedlings. This meant the team could resume their restoration activities. After preparing the planting sites, they restored 18 hectares with 13,100 saplings.
Beyond planting trees, we recognise that we need to monitor the impacts of ecosystem restoration for biodiversity. That’s why we installed 11 camera traps in and around the restoration sites to monitor the species returning to the new forest. We are also engaged in bird monitoring and the first results were encouraging: 28 species were spotted in a matter of days!
With your help, we are regenerating rainforest habitat. Orangutans and the many other species they share the forest with are free to roam, and it’s fantastic to see the restoration site becoming part of their habitat once again.