CITIZEN ACTION FOR TIGERS (CAT)
Citizen Action for Tigers (CAT) is a long-term commitment to reduce and eliminate the poaching of tigers and other endangered species in a priority wildlife corridor linking two of the largest remaining forest landscapes in Peninsular Malaysia (Sungai Yu wildlife corridor). CAT turns national policies into boots-on-the-ground action by placing citizen conservationists, including indigenous Batek people (Orang Asli), in critical areas with the support of the authorities. It is a non-confrontational anti-poaching and habitat protection program that deters poaching and illegal logging while increasing surveillance at poaching hotspots. This deterrence comes from having citizen conservationists conduct what is effectively a neighborhood watch walk in the corridor at times when the Wildlife and Forestry Departments are unable to, such as on weekends and holidays. The conservation of wildlife in this critical habitat will also help protect and preserve the culture of the indigenous Batek people, a non-violent, gender-egalitarian and once nomadic people now dispossessed from Taman Negara National Park. CAT involves the training of trip leaders (local and urban) to increase the frequency of trips as well as anticipate the training of local leaders who will lead to greater wildlife stewardship among the local community. CAT’s main outcome will be a further reduction in the number of snares found and deactivated.

The ultimate goal of this project is the protection and recovery of the tiger population in the Sungai Yu wildlife corridor and Taman Negara National Park.

The specific objective is to increase surveillance activities that supplement the government patrols, through citizen participation in the Sungai Yu wildlife corridor and Taman Negara border.

The main objectives are to:
1. Deter poaching activity at Sungai Yu wildlife corridor and encroachment into Taman Negara.
2. Obtain reliable information on crimes against wildlife from the public to aid law enforcement.
3. Cultivate wildlife and natural heritage stewardship among the Malaysian public.

The principal activity of the project is to expand surveillance activities that complement the government’s enforcement efforts, through citizen participation, in and around the Sungai Yu wildlife corridor and along the Taman Negara border. This project will allow MYCAT to expand the CAT program in three ways:
1) Train up more volunteer leaders.
2) Increase involvement of the local community, especially Orang Asli.
3) Extend CAT trips into new areas.
There are three types of CAT trips, ranging from few-hour CAT Walks to five-days-four-nights Trailblazers. Newly developed in 2013, CAT Border Walk is a hybrid of the two. Volunteers can opt to join either one depending on their fitness level and preference. New volunteers are recruited through our e-news, website, Facebook page, media exposures (volunteer web portals, newspapers and radio) and by word-of-mouth from current volunteers. CAT manuals and the safety and emergency protocol are available upon request.
Previously, the local community was targeted solely through outreach and education programs to raise awareness. Now we intend to include local residents as participants and also train selected ones as trip leaders, which includes certified Green Badge guides from from the area. These local leaders would be able to lead additional CAT trips, complementing those being led by MYCAT’s Senior Program Officer, thus increasing the overall volunteer presence in the corridor. Over time, the local leaders may eventually organize and lead CAT Walks on their own.

Through the participation of project supporting partners, alternative income streams like home-stays, guiding and the sale of handicrafts are being developed for local communities.
MYCAT will also continue to support outreach and community service programs by external partner organizations to develop capacity within local communities in areas such as recycling, English classes, creation of interpretation trails and literature, small business based on handicrafts and traditional skills, etc. These partners build rapport with communities and their volunteers, who are also CAT Walk volunteers, will engage with villagers to change their perceptions toward wildlife and conservation.
 

Project Snapshot

Grantee: Malaysian Nature Society Selangor Branch
Country: Malaysia
Area Of Work: Biodiversity
Operational Phase: Phase 5
Grant Amount: US$ 30,000.00
Co-Financing Cash: US$ 71,620.40
Co-Financing in-Kind: US$ 38,845.30
Project Number: MAL/SGP/OP5/Y2/STAR/BD/13/04
Start Date: 12/2013
End Date: 7/2015
Status: Satisfactorily Completed