African Palm Civet Nandinia binotata

Small cat-like carnivores, African palm civets have grey to dark brown fur with dark spots on their backs. They possess a long lean body and a long ringed tail. They have two scent glands on their lower abdomens which help them to makr their territory and find mates. Male adult African palm civets are slightly larger than female and they average between 1-3 kg in weight and approximately 30-70cm in body length.

They are nocturnal and spend the majority of their lives in the tree canopies of rainforests eating from fruit-bearing trees like banana, papaya, fig and corkwood.
Endemic to West Papua and Papua New Guinea, the Papuan eagle was once found on every part of the island, however their range has decreased rapidly due to deforestation for palm oil, timber and mining. Their main habitat is undisturbed tropical rainforests, monsoon scrub forests, dry woodlands and in extremely rare cases, forest edges and they are found at elevations of up to 3,200 – 3,700 metres.

Palm oil substitutes can offer beleaguered rainforests a fighting chance

Palm oil is a versatile substance used in a wide range of products from foods to cosmetics. The trouble with it is that the cultivation of oil palm trees has caused massive enviromental harm, especially in Malaysia and Indonesia, which together account for 85% of palm oil production in the world.

But scientists from Nanyang Technological University in Singapore and the University of Malaya in Malaysia say they have an answer as to how we can wean ourselves off palm oil.

Buffy-tufted-ear Marmoset Callithrix aurita

These enchanting and charismatic tiny monkeys have a distinct “gothic” appearance. They live deep in the forests of a tiny area of Brazil. Buffy-tufted-ear Marmosets are also known as buffy tufted-ear mamosets or the white-eared marmosets. They are New World monkeys living in a geographically isolated region in the Atlantic coast that has been decimated for palm oil, soy and cattle ranching agriculture and mining.

Eyewitness Story by Dr Setia Budhi: The Last Village

Pictured: The Barito River, the largest river in South Kalimantan Borneo by Aditya Perdana, Getty Images Recently, I stayed a Ngaju Dayak village for 15 days During my visit I wrote a lot, chatted with villagers and visited palm oil farmers. This remote village is 125 km from downtown Banjarmasin. It’s a distance of aboutContinue reading “Eyewitness Story by Dr Setia Budhi: The Last Village”

The Washington Post recommends that you boycott palm oil in 2022 and beyond

The original version of this article was published as ‘How to Make More Socially Conscious Halloween Candy Choices in The Washington Post on the 14th of October 2022. Originally written by Allyson Chiu and was republished via syndication by MSN While chocolate is a crowd-pleaser, the ubiquitous candy “has some pretty close associations with twoContinue reading “The Washington Post recommends that you boycott palm oil in 2022 and beyond”

Learn how to boycott palm oil this Halloween in America, the UK and Australia

The reality of these chocolate and confectionery brands is the spookiest story you will ever hear this Halloween Learn how to boycott with handy lists for the US, Uk and Australia. Countless reports show that popular lollies, candies and chocolate brands in Australia, the United States of America and United Kingdom such as Hersheys, Nestle,Continue reading “Learn how to boycott palm oil this Halloween in America, the UK and Australia”

Spectacled Bear Tremarctos ornatus

Spectacled bears are known as the ‘peaceful and gentle bear’. They are the only bear living in the tropics of South America. Like many other animals in tropical ecosystems they are endangered. They get their name from their eye-catching markings around their eyes, face and neck that resemble spectacles. Each bear has unique markings like a fingerprint and some bears don’t have them at all.

They are found throughout the thin line of Peruvian rainforest and their range stretches across several countries: Bolivia, Ecuador, Peru, Venezuela and Colombia. Their main threats are habitat loss to mining, logging, cattle farming, palm oil and soy as well as hunting. Protect them each time you shop by boycotting meat and palm oil in the supermarket.

Four Things to Know about Cholesterol

Cholesterol is among the most feared substances, but why? You need cholesterol to produce some hormones and to build vital structures in your body. But too much-referred to as high cholesterol-can build up in your arteries and lead to heart attack, stroke, and other cardiovascular diseases. That’s why it’s important to get tested and knowContinue reading “Four Things to Know about Cholesterol”

What is causing the latest outbreak of Ebola in Uganda?

The answers to preventing future zoonotic diseases are staring us right in the face: we should stop eating animals and consuming animal products and we should stop destroying rainforests for palm oil, soy and other crops! Many research papers and books have been written about the connection between the relentless capitalist growth imperative of multinationalContinue reading “What is causing the latest outbreak of Ebola in Uganda?”

Caecilians: secretive, strange and slithering underground dwellers in tropical rainforests

OK, Ok…I know this is quite a scary photo but hear me out. Caecilians are legless, eyeless creatures live secretive, strange lives underground and underwater. Not quite snakes, not quite worms and not quite amphibians either.

Once you know more about them they may still come to you in dreams, but you might just love them too.

They belong to the same group of animals that includes frogs and salamanders. But unlike other amphibians, caecilians lack legs. Some caecilians are as short as a pencil, while others grow as long as a child. Their eyes are tiny and hidden beneath skin and sometimes bone. And they have a pair of tentacles on their face that can sniff out chemicals in the environment.

Kaapori Capuchin Cebus kaapori

The Kaapori capuchin is on a knife-edge of survival – they are critically endangered. In 2017 their population had been decimated by 80% due to deforestation for agriculture including soy, cattle grazing and palm oil. Part of the gracile genus of capuchin monkeys, Kaapori (also known as ka’apor) capuchins have longer limbs in comparison to their body size. They weigh around 2-3 kilos. Compared to other capuchin species, they have rounder skulls and musculature supporting their teeth and jaws means that they can’t open hard nuts. To get at insects living inside of trees they break branches with their teeth and hands in order to reach the ants inside. They also smash snails against trees in order to crack their shells open.

Seaweed is high in vitamins and minerals – but that’s not the only reason westerners should eat more of it

Edible seaweeds and algae – or sea vegetables – are a group of aquatic plants that are found in the ocean. Kelp, dulse, wakame and sea grapes are all types of seaweeds that are used in seaweed-based dishes. Seaweeds are a highly versatile and nutritious food source that can benefit our diet. Seaweeds are often rich in fibre and high in vitamins and minerals. This includes iodine and vitamin B12, which can be lacking in vegetarian and vegan diets.

Mel Lumby: The beautiful begonias of Borneo and beyond deserve our love and protection

Begonias, along with orangutans and many other rainforest inhabitants are in danger now. Will these precious jewels of the jungle be located by scientists, described, eventually named and shared, so that people can love and marvel at their incredible beauty? Or will the bulldozer get there first, destroying where they live, making way to plant oil palm plantations for cheap palm oil? Retired horticulturalist and animal advocate Mel Lumby will keep fighting for as long as she lives.

Papuan Eagle Harpyopsis novaeguineae

This powerful raptor has unusual proportions with a large prominent head, a powerful large bill and large eyes with piercing brown or orange irises. Their robust and chesty build tapers down to extremely elongated legs in a brown-grey or orange colour. As Papuan eagles age, the colour of their eyes becomes more vivid, with one 30 year old eagle possessing red eyes.

Endemic to West Papua and Papua New Guinea, the Papuan eagle was once found on every part of the island, however their range has decreased rapidly due to deforestation for palm oil, timber and mining. Their main habitat is undisturbed tropical rainforests, monsoon scrub forests, dry woodlands and in extremely rare cases, forest edges and they are found at elevations of up to 3,200 – 3,700 metres.

Celebrate #WorldRhinoDay by leaving the forests alone and #Boycottpalmoil to save imperilled Sumatran & Javan Rhinos

Indonesia manage to conserve two of the world’s five rhinoceros species. Both the Javan rhino Rhinoceros sondaicus and the Sumatran rhino Dicerorhinus sumatrensis still exist today, uniquely only in the country. Extractive industries and large-scale palm oil plantations have transformed the landscape of Sumatra. As a result, the Sumatran rhino’s populations were driven to theContinue reading “Celebrate #WorldRhinoDay by leaving the forests alone and #Boycottpalmoil to save imperilled Sumatran & Javan Rhinos”

September 21st: International Day of Struggle Against Monoculture Plantations

Today is ‘International Day of Struggle Against Monoculture Tree Plantations. World Rainforest Movement have produced a powerful video to highlight the Ugandan people’s struggle against BIDCO an international company partly owned by global palm oil giant Wilmar, who are taking land by force from locals by making false promises and using coercion and violence. They do so under the greenwashing protection of the RSPO

Philippine Eagle Pithecophaga jefferyi

Philippine Eagles are classified as Critically Endangered due to enormous habitat decline and anthropogenic threats. There are estimated to be 180-600 eagles left in the wild. Forest destruction and fragmentation, through commercial timber extraction and shifting cultivation, is the principal long-term threat. Much of the land surrounding Davao has been converted from forest land to agricultural to grow banana, coffee, cacao, palm oil and another oil-producing plant called jatropha.

Reasons to Hope: Palm Oil Alternatives Made Without Deforestation

Environmental organisation Milieudefensie have calculated that every second, around 169 trees are cut down in tropical rainforests. So the race is on to find a real solution to stop this! Right now, several new technologies are furiously competing with each other to create a healthier, lab-created alternatives to palm oil. Palm oil has been historically grown inContinue reading “Reasons to Hope: Palm Oil Alternatives Made Without Deforestation”

Giant Otter Pteronura brasiliensis

The agile and graceful tumbling Olympians of the Amazonian rivers, Giant Otters are able to swim 100 metres in less than 30 seconds. They are also known as the Lobo de Rio (the River wolf), Los Lobos del Rio (Wolves of the River) and Ariranha. They are most active in the mornings and evenings and take a siesta during the hottest parts of the day.

The most significant threats to giant otters are anthropogenic pressures of deforestation for palm oil, soy and meat, pollution from mining and climate change. They are also illegally hunted and traded for their pelts or killed in retribution by fishermen.

Every day deserves to be World Orangutan Day

Although #WorldOrangutanDay falls on the 19th of August, in our opinion, every day deserves to be World Orangutan Day! So here is an infographic that you can download, print and share however you please.

All three species of orangutan are classified as ‘endangered’ or ‘critically endangered’ in S.E. Asia. Their main threat is palm oil deforestation in Indonesia and Malaysia