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Muara Angke, Really in Jakarta?

15 February 2011 1,518 views No Comment

Muara Angke Wildlife Reservation is a conservation area in the mangrove forest on the north coast of Jakarta, the capital of Indonesia. The reservation was originally established by Dutch colonial on June 17, 1939, with initial area of 15.04 acres. The are was later expanded and in 1960’s has about 1344.62 acres. With the increasing pressure and environmental degradation, some area of this reservation became corrupted. Therefore, 60 years after it was first designated as a nature preserve, the Indonesian government in 1998 changed its status to that of a wildlife reserve.

Muara Angke is the smallest wildlife reserve in Indonesia, however it has very important role. Birdlife International – one of the world bird conservation organization, even listed Muara Angke as one of the important areas for birds in Java.

The Fauna

Muara Angke is the home for various species of birds and various other animals that have been hard to find in any other place in Jakarta. In fact, this place seems like not in Jakarta at all!. It’s recorded taht there are 91 species of birds, 28 species of water birds and 63 species of forest birds, 17 species of which are protected.

The species that often found includes Phalacrocorax niger, Ardeola, Egretta, Amaurornis phoenicurus,Gallinula chloropus, Psittacula alexandri, Pycnonotos goiavier, Rhipidura javanica, Gerygone sulphurea and many others.

Muara Angke is also inhabited by some endemic birds which only exists in Java like Charadrius javanicus and Centropus nigrorufus. Other endangered birds that inhabit this area is Mycteria cinerea. In Java, this species is known to breed on Rambut Island not far from Muara Angke.

In addition to birds, some groups of long-tailed monkeys(Macaca fascicularis) also live on Muara Angke. Their primary food is the young leaves and the mangroves fruits like pidada(Sonneratia caseolaris). The se monkeys have important role in Muara Angke as they help spreading the seeds of plants. The undigested seed will be reissued along with the feces.

Other mammal species that can be found, but rarely seen, is the small-claw otter(Aonyx cinerea). This animal is nocturnal.

There are also reptilies in Muara Angke, such water lizzard(Varanus salvator), python(Python reticulatus), Naja sputatrix, Bungarus fasciatus, and many others. According to information from local people, there is even crocodiles(Crocodylus porosus).

It’s hard to imagine that some place exists in Jakarta, the biggest city in Indonesia, and it’s an irony, and a little bit sad because the area is considered too small.

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