At Tasikoki every day is Earth Day


To understand what we mean with the title ‘At Tasikoki, every day is Earth Day’, just have a look at what has been going on for the last few weeks at Masarang’s Tasikoki Wildlife Rescue and Education Center in North Sulawesi, Indonesia. Despite great financial worries due to the Covid-19 crisis, our team has continued working hard to rescue more animals from the illegal wildlife trade and to continue to take the best possible care of the hundreds of animals already at our centre, even after releasing so many animals back to the wild over the last months. We hope we can count on your continued support to keep our important work going also after today’s April 22nd, 2021, official Earth Day.


Lories and the cockatoo

13 golden-mantled racket-tailed lories and 6 violet-necked lories were confiscated from an illegal wildlife trader. Seeing the cramped conditions of the birds it is easy to understand the stress these poor birds are experiencing. As a result of such stress, many of these wild-caught birds never make it to the markets where these protected birds are sold illegally.

The sulphur-crested cockatoo was found by the man in the picture wandering around on the fourth floor of a hotel in Manado and he decided to hand it over to our Tasikoki rescue team. These kinds of actions make us feel hopeful. Awareness is rising but much more is needed.

A black crested macaque (Macaca nigra) named “Blacky” was handed over by an army officer who had kept him as an illegal pet. But one day it attacked another member of the armed forces so they tried to bring it to the Tangkoko National Park to be released. There the park staff made it clear to the group that this kind of release would almost surely result in Blacky’s death by the wild macaques and there would also be the risk of Blacky bringing some human disease into the wild population. So after that explanation, the officer brought the macaque to Masarang Foundation’s Tasikoki Center where he will be joining a group to learn natural behaviour again and to have his health thoroughly checked before we will try to release Blacky to the wild again.

Medical team at work at Tasikoki

Caring for the hundreds of protected animals at our centre is a daily challenge. Not just how to finance the operations but also how to deal with the many different diets of the various animal species and their specific medical care. On the left, one of the slow lorises is being weighed. On the right, the medical team is making their best effort to get the animals that need it to take the medication they need voluntarily by mixing it into various good tasting pastes and make the packaging more interesting. Our staff has become very creative indeed!

As seen above, our vets must multi-task. Operating to remove tumours from a huge Bornean River Turtle, the next moment stitching up the wounds of a macaque that got hurt in a fight while building a socialized group to be released. Our staff is there around the clock, seven days a week to help the animals that are entrusted to Tasikoki Center.

Feeding time at Tasikoki

Here is part of the supply for two days of feeding the animals at Tasikoki. On the left some bananas that we grow with our compost at the Tasikoki compound to reduce the cost of buying food from outside to help not just the animals but also our centre to survive the crisis. Masarang Hong Kong is proud to have supported the cost of feeding the animals at Tasikoki for many months during the Covid-19 crisis.

The deer and the rare Babirusa eating together during feeding time. They share a very large enclosure where they can roam between the trees and in high grass and hide from staring eyes when they want. But at feeding time they know where they want to be!

Staff of Tasikoki in the sun bear facility and a proud Billy Lolowang

Our staff is working on the repair and improvement for the sun bear facility in Tasikoki. They were smuggled from Sumatra on the way to the Philippines when they were intercepted. Unfortunately, there is very little chance of them being released to the wild so we try to give them the best possible life while with us at Tasikoki.

Last but not least a picture of Billy Lolowang, the Tasikoki Wildlife Manager, accepting a reward on behalf of Tasikoki given by the Ministry of Environment and Forestry. The award was given for the support that our Masarang Foundation provides to the Ministry helping to deal with the illegal wildlife trade.