Save the Malayan Sun Bear from Extinction

  • by: Nyack Clancy
  • target: International Union for Conservation of Nature, CITES

The Malayan sun bear is the smallest bear in the world- about 4 feet tall when standing on its hind legs. Also known as the honey bear, it is primarily found in tropical rainforests in Southeast Asia and on the islands of Sumatra and Borneo in Indonesia.

So much is known about the destruction of the rainforsests in Indonesia being replaced by palm oil plantations- and the animals being driven to extinction- such as the Sumatran tiger, orangutan, elephant and rhino; but less in known about the sun bear, and it was listed by the International Union for Conservation of Nature as "data defiecient" until 2007.

In addition to leveling the Sumatra forest, logging roads create convenient access for poachers. As natural food sources disappear, sun bears are driven by hunger to forage for food on  plantations, where they are shot or trapped by angry farmers. Often. sun bears are kept as pets. The mother bears are killed in order to obtain cubs young enough to tame.

The demand for bear products used in Traditional Asian Medicine is another threat as it prescribes bear fat, gall, meat, paws, spinal cord, blood, and bones for complaints ranging from baldness to rheumatism. Bear entrees are popular in restaurants, and sun bear paws are favored in Taiwan for soup.

With the habitat of the sun bear replaced with palm oil plantations, there should be no question as to whether the sun bear, (Helarctos malayanus), is endangered. Please list it as so immediately as it faces the same extinction possibilities as other Sumatran animals that once called the rainforest their home.

The Malayan sun bear is the smallest bear in the world- about 4 feet tall when standing on its hind legs. Also known as the honey bear, it is primarily found in tropical rainforests in Southeast Asia and on the islands of Sumatra and Borneo in Indonesia.


So much is known about the destruction of the rainforsests in Indonesia being replaced by palm oil plantations- and the animals being driven to extinction- such as the Sumatran tiger, orangutan, elephant and rhino; but less in known about the sun bear, and it was listed by the International Union for Conservation of Nature as "data defiecient" until 2007.


In addition to leveling the Sumatra forest, logging roads create convenient access for poachers. As natural food sources disappear, sun bears are driven by hunger to forage for food on  plantations, where they are shot or trapped by angry farmers. Often. sun bears are kept as pets. The mother bears are killed in order to obtain cubs young enough to tame.


The demand for bear products used in Traditional Asian Medicine is another threat as it prescribes bear fat, gall, meat, paws, spinal cord, blood, and bones for complaints ranging from baldness to rheumatism. Bear entrees are popular in restaurants, and sun bear paws are favored in Taiwan for soup.


With the habitat of the sun bear replaced with palm oil plantations, there should be no question as to whether the sun bear, (Helarctos malayanus), is endangered. Please list it as so immediately as it faces the same extinction possibilities as other Sumatran animals that once called the rainforest their home.

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