The Death of Tam: A Faltering Hope

Tam's death is a despairing reminder that the Sumatran rhino is one step closer to extinction with just 50 to 80 animals left worldwide.
Ensani-The Death of Tam: A faltering hope.
Ensani-The Death of Tam: A faltering hope.

Read this article in Malay version here: Pemergian Tam: Harapan Yang Makin Pudar.

Tam’s death made global headlines last week. He was the last male Sumatran rhino in Malaysia. 

Back in 2008, Tam was discovered poking around an oil palm plantationHe was captured and transferred to Tabin Wildlife Reserve in SabahMalaysia declared the Sumatran rhino extinct in the wild in 2015 but Tam’s captivity reignited hope for the conservation effort.

Unfortunately, many breeding efforts were unsuccessful.

That is why Tam’s death is despairing news.

His death is a despairing reminder that the Sumatran rhino is one step closer to extinction with just 50 to 80 animals left worldwide.

Today, only one female Sumatran rhino remains in Malaysia. Her name is ImanBut with the death of Tam, Iman is alone ending efforts to produce an offspring.

Habitat loss and ongoing poaching have driven the species to the brink of extinction. Rhinos were routinely hunted in the early 1900s, during which 20 rhino horns were exported annually. 

Nonetheless, Tam‘s loss does underscore the urgency of finding the remaining Sumatran rhinos in the wilds of Kalimantan and Sumatra and bringing them to sanctuaries where they can be protected, along with a more concerted effort to produce offsprings.

Malaysia still holds out hope that Indonesia can be persuaded to reignite joint effort for conservation.

Let’s not let Tam’s death be in vain. Time for you to do your part and save these beautiful creatures.

Read this article in Malay version here: Pemergian Tam: Harapan Yang Makin Pudar.

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