Bat Week 2019: Remember to thank the bats for our durian!

The last week of October is official International #BatWeek! It takes place from the 24th to the 31st. Download press kit here.

It’s an opportunity to celebrate all the many different ways bats are awesome, and to remember why we humans need them, and also to overturn the prevailing negative images and associations with bats that get particularly ramped up during this time of the year.

Bats are NOT scary, spooky, creepy, or evil. Bats are helping us! To kick off Bat Week 2019 and explain how exactly bats help people in Southeast Asia specifically, Project Pteropus has produced this informative and educational video on how durian trees get pollinated by fruit bats. Using watercolour drawings by local artist Novia Shin, and animated by Penang-based production company Hatchtag Media, it was made possible through partnerships with the Department of Wildlife and National Parks, Year of the Durian, Green Acres Orchard, Cintai Tioman, the Southeast Asian Bat Conservation Research Unit, and Mabuwaya Foundation – thanks to grants generously provided by the Rufford Foundation, the United States Fish and Wildlife Service, and The Habitat Foundation.

This video is also available in Malay and Mandarin (Simplified Chinese subtitles). If you would like to obtain a copy for your own non-profit conservation outreach or environmental education purposes, please contact Sheema.

Happy Bat Week and let’s look forward to the next durian season when we can #thankthebats again!!

 

Video Update 7: Harimau Selamanya

In conjunction with Earth Day, a documentary is being released to call on Muslims to take better care of our planet’s precious biodiversity.

This five-minute film, entitled ‘Harimau Selamanya’, highlights the need to protect our environment in the context of Islam, with a special focus on the plight of the Malayan tiger.

It includes a special appearance by HRH Sultan Mizan Zainal Abidin, along with experts who impart their knowledge on the responsibility of a good Muslim to protect the planet and its creatures.

This documentary highlights the tenets of Islam, which forbid Muslims from hunting any species to extinction. Such acts are declared as ‘haram’ and every follower is duty bound as ‘caliphs’ to protect Allah’s creations.

Watch the video here!

More details on the background of this video can be found here.

Follow the video’s impact through:

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/harimaubuatselamanya/

Twitter: https://twitter.com/rimauselamanya

Instagram: https://instagram.com/harimauselamanya

Project update 19, photo update 11, video update 6: Project Pteropus phase 1 in review

sheema_esteban_tekek

It’s definitely been a crazy, roller coaster ride for Project Pteropus so far! Time flies when you’re having fun, and before we knew it, we’re already in the third and final year of Sheema‘s PhD. We’re due to start a tiny bit more of fieldwork over the next 3 months, then everything needs to be wrapped up pronto as she’ll be on her way to spend 6 months in Paris this June 🙂

So what has the project achieved so far? Some pretty exciting stuff, as it turns out. Almost all the data are in already, but some still need a bit of time to be analysed. We’ve decided to summarise our results so far into an interim report, which is why you’re getting this bumper post that serves as a compilation of updates, photos AND videos all at the same time! 😀

Also, HUGE thanks to Bat Conservation International for awarding us a small grant in September last year. Without this funding we definitely wouldn’t have been able to achieve as much as we have, and we’re deeply grateful. Click on the BCI logo below to find out more about applying for their small grants:

BCI logo

Meanwhile, here’s what we’ve found out up to this point (if you’re just interested in the images and don’t need to read through the information, just scroll down further!): Continue reading