Indonesia is an archipelago with many rainforests and animals living in it. From Sabang to Merauke, all natural ecosystems are important. Some of these forests are even recognized as the lungs of the world. The indigenous fauna itself has important roles to keep nature in balance, because who knows the after effect if a species went extinct. For example, the West Papua population of fauna, there are a few notable species that needs protection.
Kuskus Waigeo or as the experts called it the Scham – Scham Kuskus, is a marsupial animal that originates from Waigeo, West Papua. This particular Kuskus is very unique, because the appearance of both male and female ones is pretty much similar, unlike other species of Kuskus that can be easily identified.
From their appearance, you can say that it is similar to the Black-Spotted Kuskus. This animal has a white to yellowish pattern on the underside of its body. While the legs are usually rust colored with a black pattern on its back. However, the experts have stated that the DNA of both of these species are different. Making the Waigeo Kuskus special.
The Waigeo Kuskus lived in areas with an altitude of 1200 meters above sea level. Not only in Waigeo, this species can be found in the northern part of Papua, like Raja Ampat and other small islands.
The West Papua population of Waigeo Kuskus is at the status of Vulnerable level. Thus, need to be conserved and protected. They can be aggressive when approached, do not try to approach this animal when you see it on your next visit to Sorong. Admire it from afar.
As the name suggests, this bird’s habitat is at Arfak Mountain, West Papua. The status of this bird is also Vulnerable. It is estimated that the total population of this bird is less than 10.000. It has a body length of 10 centimeters.
Starting from the head, it has a white face with grey colored head to neck and throat. As for the eyes, they are dark brown. The tail is dominated with dark brown color and yellowish sides. Meanwhile, the stomach area has a cinnamon color. Lastly, the Arfak Bondol has a grey beak. There are no color differences between the male and female of this particular species.
Speckled Carpet Shark
In the shallow beautiful sea of Raja Ampat, there it swims, the beautiful Speckled Carpet Shark. This endemic and endangered species is well known by other countries because of its beautiful body. Like a leopard, it has a brown colored skin with black spots. The shark can grow up to approximately 46 centimeters.
This shark is not as scary as other sharks that we come to know, it lives in coral areas and active at night. The Speckled Carpet Shark usually do its activity at night. It hunts animals smaller than its size, however it can also hunt on animals greater than his size if it wants to!
Tree Gold Coated Kangaroo
This cute marsupial can be seen both in Papua and West Papua. This animal spends most of its live on tress. It has a thick coat of fur to keep the body temperature warm, because it lives at 1700 meters above sea level.
The status of this marsupial is endangered, because of forest destruction and hunting. The IUCN stated that there has been a decrease of the population as much as 80% in the last 30 years. Conservation efforts has been done in order to preserve this endemic Papua species. If you are in Papua, you can see this animal in the Lorentz National Park.
As we can see, the West Papua population of endangered fauna still needs attention from all of us. We must work together to create a sustainable ecosystem that benefits both, like an ecotourism for example. Be kind to nature, and it will come back to us.