The project was started by Priscillia Miard, a French student currently finishing her PhD at the Universiti Sains Malaysia in Penang. She started the project to bring awareness about her study and those cryptic animals she was studying. Along the way she found out that Colugos are awesome and their behaviour unknown. So, she started with some interns a long-term research project on them in Langkawi and 1 year we have developed a really good method to identify the animals and study their behaviour. We follow them every night and now we have a new Master student Fizri who will be with us for at least 1 year. He needs your help to put tracking tags on them and allow us to study them even more in depths. We have two sites, a forested one (golf course) and one by a busy street. This will allow us to see how they adapt to disturbed environment.
Why Night spotting Project has been created
- Nocturnal arboreal mammal community assessment
- Determination of factors limiting and influencing the spatial distribution of those mammals
- Researching the foraging ecology, habitat use and bioacoustics communication of those mammals
- Raising community awareness
Community awareness and education is also key in this project as the natural habitats of those mammals are declining due to increase urbanisation and deforestation. For this reason, we also aim to:
- Reach local audience with a strong scientific basis and first-hand experience from field researchers by creating a school program to discover the night.
Why we need your help:
We need your help to support Fizri master project costs:
- Equipment needed: Headtorch with red filter (3x200RM) = 600 RM
VHF implant for colugos (4x875RM) = 3500 RM
VHF tracking device = 4200 RM
- Help for field cost master student 6 months:
Petrol (200RM/months) = 1,200 RM
- Help for Master student fees 1 semester: 3,000 RM
Total cost: 12,500 RM
The Impact your contribution will make:
- With you help we will first be able to support Fizri costs for his master at the Universiti Sains Malaysia for one semester. Studying in the field of conservation is not easy and funding for school fees is often at the charge of the student and its family.
- With this project we will get a better understanding of this species and why they are important to us. We already know they are important for tree productivity and pollination, but we need actually data to show it. They are also an ancient species that has adapted differently than most mammals and this is exciting to know more about them.
- We will also engage more with the local community and schools through activities, talk and road show. Most people have no idea what a colugo is and this is in part because not a single zoo in the world managed to keep them in captivity.
Collaborators involved in the project
University Sains Malaysia: This study is part of a master thesis by Fizri done under the Universiti Sains Malaysia in Penang. Many more local and foreigns interns are involved too in the project during the year.
Malaysian Primatological Society: The aim of MPS is to act as coordinator and facilitator of primate-related studies in Malaysia among Malaysian and international researchers and to upgrade current research to an international level. Besides research, MPS wants to work towards conservation of endangered local primate species and create broad public awareness on relevant topics related to Malaysian primates.
The Habitat Foundation: The Foundation was our main founder for the start of this research. The mission of the Habitat Foundations is to contribute to biodiversity conservation by supporting education, research, and sustainable tourism. We are committed to providing a platform for scientific research and strategic initiatives in close collaboration with key stakeholders and local communities.
The Datai Langkawi Resort and ELS Teluk Datai Golf course: Both those places have supported our research allowing us access to their facilities to study the colugos at night.
The Datai Langkawi, located in the heart of the rainforest, is a 5 star beach resort with nature, sustainability, wellness and fine dining at its core. An Ernie Els championship design, the Rainforest Course at The Els Club Malaysia in Teluk Datai is an all golf cart course, with a driving range and more.
Here are some of the items available in the perks: