ESR 22:1-9 (2013)  -  doi:10.3354/esr00525

First estimates of population ecology and threats to Sunda clouded leopards Neofelis diardi in a peat-swamp forest, Indonesia

Susan M. Cheyne1,2,*, Danica J. Stark3, Suwido H. Limin4, David W. Macdonald

1Wildlife Conservation Research Unit (WildCRU), Department of Zoology, Oxford University, The Recanati-Kaplan Centre, Tubney House, Abingdon Road, Tubney OX13 5QL, UK
2Orang-utan Tropical Peatland Project, Jalan Semeru No. 91, Bukit Hindu, Palangka Raya, Indonesia
3Cardiff School of Biosciences, Cardiff, University, Biomedical Sciences Building, Museum Avenue, Cardiff CF10 3AX, UK
4Centre for the International Cooperation in Management of Tropical Peatlands (CIMTROP), University of Palangka Raya, Indonesia

ABSTRACT: The Sunda clouded leopard Neofelis diardi is Borneo’s largest predator. A study of the species’ population ecology in 50 km2 (effective sample area 145 km2) of the Sabangau forest, Central Kalimantan, Indonesia, spanned May 2008 to January 2012. A total of 54 camera traps at 27 stations yielded 35129 functional trap nights resulting in 90 photos of 6 clouded leopards: 5 males and 1 female. Using capture-recapture analysis in 3 mo blocks, we extrapolated to an estimated density range of 0.72 to 4.41 ind. per 100 km2 across all models and all data sets. Direct hunting pressure on the cats and indirect threats through possible depletion of the prey base by humans were assessed though interview and questionnaire surveys of 68 villagers in 9 villages around the edge of the 5600 km2 Sabangau Forest. Of the respondents, 40% hunted deer and bearded pigs, although no respondent listed hunting as their main source of income or food. The low detection rates of clouded leopards suggests that a minimum area of 100 km2 per site, and multiple sites, should be studied to elucidate the impact of habitat disturbance and fragmentation on clouded leopard populations.


KEY WORDS: Camera trapping · Capture-recapture · Predator · Hunting


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Cite this article as: Cheyne SM, Stark DJ, Limin SH, Macdonald DW (2013) First estimates of population ecology and threats to Sunda clouded leopards Neofelis diardi in a peat-swamp forest, Indonesia. Endang Species Res 22:1-9

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