Tiger Wildlife Reserves


Meru Betiri

Ujung Kulon


Reserves For The Javan Subspecies


Baluran National Park, on the north-east corner of Java, was designated a wildlife reserve in 1937. but it was not until 1982, probably some time after the Javan tiger had become extinct, that its status was changed to that of National Park. It covers an area of 250 square kilometres (27,868 hectares) and was the home of Javan tigers right up until the 1960s when the last specimen was eliminated from the area. For the tiger, the declaration of Baluran as a National Park was simply too little and too late. Like the other protected areas on Java, the park areas were not large enough to sustain an animal which needs such a large territory. The main felid to be seen here now is the leopard.

The park mascot is the Banteng, also known as Bali cattle, or Javanese ox, which is native to the area. These cattle look similar to the domestic animal and weigh in at 600-800 kg. Their total population is between 5,000 and 8,000 individuals, and no single population contains more than 500 Banteng. In fact, only about eight or nine groups exceed 50 cattle and the species is already extinct from some of their previous strongholds in India, Bangladesh and Malaysia. An illegal trade in horn continues to flourish and the World Conservation Monitoring Centre lists Banteng as vulnerable.

In Australia, Banteng are kept on safari parks and shot by trophy hunters. This country also contains the world's largest huntable wild herd of Banteng. It is not uncommon for a species which is under threat in its native land to be kept for this purpose in another country. With some species the number of animals kept for sport shooting exceeds the numbers still in the wild. What is the trophy value of an animal which is extinct in much of its original territory? For Banteng these hunters willingly pay a trophy fee in excess of US$2,500.

At Baluran it is also possible to see leaf monkeys, monitor lizards, squirrels, fruit bats, civets, and wild pig. Bird species include the green jungle fowl, kingfisher, bee-eater, owl and peacock.

Today Baluran Nation Park is surrounded by heavily cultivated and industrialised land. It suffers encroachment from local villages and year round is often overrun by weekend visitors. Heavy promotion of this park as a tourist attraction continues. Couple this with the park's very ready accessibility and it seems unlikely the area will remain unspoilt.

Javan Tiger Reserves - Baluran | Meru Betiri | Ujung Kulon

Origin | Project Tiger | Releasing Captive Tigers | The Tale Of Tara | Taking A CensusPost Mortems
Tiger Reserves: Amur | Bali | Bengal | Caspian | Corbetts | Javan | South Chinese | Sumatran

Wild Tigers Index | Home

Photography With Thanks To Lisa Purcell (Photo 2)
Darren New (Photo 3)

© All Rights Reserved. Displayed here with permission, for educational, non-profit purposes.