Barito bird project 1989

Guy Dutson

A thorough survey of bird and large mammal species at Barito Ulu, central Kalimantan. Forty-four mammal species recorded. Coverage of species identifiable in the field, including nocturnal species was good, but only three species of rodent were trapped and two species of bat netted. Mammals were present at low densities but there was high species diversity, mirroring the avian situation. Barito Ulu is thought to be typical of the 'poor-quality' forests of interior Borneo. Such forests still cover a large proportion of Borneo and may be under less immediate threat from logging than the more accessible and commercially valuable lowland forests. Their role in the conservation of bird species threatened by lowland forest destruction may be significant. In view of the lowland species recorded at Barito Ulu, greater efforts might be directed to the research and conservation of interior hill forests. Whilst conservation of remaining lowland forests should still be the priority, the opportunity is still available to preserve extensive tracts of the undisturbed hill forest supporting a diverse avifauna including several bird species threatened by loss of lowland forest.