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  SOS Rhino : In the News : News From The Field : MONTHLY FIELD REPORT JANUARY 2004


  SOS Rhino Borneo

SOS Rhino field team was continuously on alert at the Community Outreach Program (COP) project base camp since December 2003. The east coast of Sabah was experiencing the northeast monsoon about this time. Although this is a normal phenomenon, the impact for this particular year is considered overwhelming. The people believe that such massive flood occurs once in ten years. Others believe that this is a leap year phenomenon. Our COP camp, which is situated along Sabahís second longest and largest river, is not spared. Fortunately, we built our huts on high stilt and the post-flooding silt deposition increase our camp land surface height by two feet. We construct small drains around the huts to quickly drain water back to the river. The weather continued to be unfavorable for this month. The campsite was soggy, wet and muddy.

COP project site with high water level

Field assistant Justine Lanjang on soggy muddy ground
We can do nothing except to continue to be vigilance as the weatherman has reported that this heavy rain would last till March 2004.

No surveys work could be done for this month. Nevertheless, the field staffs managed to retrieve several good loose stray logs, and safely tethered them to trees near the camp. Loose logs are brought down from upper part of the river. They will end up at the estuary causing blockage and impeding traveling by boats. Loose logs are also dangerous for fishermen plying along this river, especially during the night. For SOS Rhino, the loose logs are cut into planks using chainsaw. These planks are used for the construction of the huts, toilet, bathroom and jetty.

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