Say cheese! Tigers caught on camera in Harapan

We’re using hidden cameras to survey Critically Endangered Sumatran Tigers and other rare wildlife in the remote Hutan Harapan rainforest in Sumatra.

5 min read
A Tiger walking through a clearing in the Harapan Rainforest.

Hutan Harapan rainforest is one of the most biologically diverse places on the planet, but tracking elusive wildlife through dense undergrowth across almost 100,000 hectares is incredibly challenging. As a result, reliable population estimates for many of Harapan’s species, including Sumatran Tigers, are lacking.

To address this, we set up camera traps in the hope of capturing images of tigers, which can be individually identified by their unique stripe patterns.

So far, three tigers have been caught on camera, in three different locations. We’ve also recorded other signs of tigers, such as scratch marks and droppings, in 13 survey areas.

This is great news and following additional surveys in 2023 we hope to have a much clearer idea of how many of these rare creatures live in Hutan Harapan.

A host of other species were captured on camera in the forest too, including Malayan Sunbears, Sunda Pangolins and Leopard Cats.

Birdseye view of lush green forest.

A rainforest under threat

Sadly, the tigers’ forest home is under threat from a proposed coal road, which would pass through the southern part of Hutan Harapan.

This road would destroy and fragment habitats, releasing climate-warming carbon from the trees and soil, and also increase access to the area, making it easier for illegal poachers and loggers to reach the protected forest. 

The indigenous communities that live in and rely on the rainforest will be affected too. Construction of the coal road will disrupt their way of life and could lead to displacement and a violation of their human rights.

We’re determined to protect the forest, and its wildlife and people, so alongside our partners, we’re urging the construction company to change the route of the road to minimise its impact.

Discover more inspiring stories

From restoring rainforests to protecting Bee-eaters, download our Annual Report for an in-depth look at our work.

Read the full report

Share this article