Sumatran Orangutan Society’s newest partner, Nature For Change, is based near Bukit Lawang, on the edge of Leuser National Park, which in total covers more than one million hectares and is home to Sumatran orangutans, elephants, tigers, rhinos and thousands of other species. The buffer zone around the park belongs to the communities living in or near it, and the land is often used for small rubber and oil palm plantations. Farmers who plant a few fruit trees among their main crops often find they lose the majority of the fruit to orangutans and other wild animals, so one of Nature for Change’s initiatives is to encourage more of a polyculture system. By planting a greater number and diversity of fruiting trees, farmers will lose a smaller proportion to wildlife and will no longer feel the need to protect their crops by injuring or killing animals who enter their plantations. In this way, cultivated land can also become more of a ‘green corridor’ for animals, as they will no longer be in danger if they leave the boundaries of the national park and find themselves in the buffer zone around it.
This recent photo from Nature For Change founder, Darma, shows happy faces at one of the tree-planting sites as it starts to look green and lush.
You can help Sumatran Orangutan Society support Nature For Change by donating here.