What’s a sun bear? Where’s Borneo? Why do I care?
Sun bear survival is intrinsically linked to the survival of thousands of species that also exist in the tropical forests of Borneo.
Through documentary film, this conservation crusade will inspire a global awareness about sun bears and what is needed for them to survive in the diminishing forests of Borneo.
Survival of the Sun Bear is an awareness campaign to educate the greater public about sun bears.
Since one of the primary threats to sun bear survival is that they are a widely unknown species, the mission is to document our entire process of conducting sun bear research and expand sun bear awareness by producing an educational and inspirational documentary film. I plan to make this film widely available and share it with colleges and other educational institutions around the world.
“Three years ago I experienced my first taste of the Borneo jungle and its incredible array of wild species. I also met my first sun bear. I fell in love.
I was welcomed into the BSBCC as their first on-site photojournalist. During the month that I spent photographing the sun bears, I experienced many firsts… my first tug-o-war with a wild orangutan…my first case of Dengue fever….my first run-in with a komodo dragon in the shower… but most memorably it was the first time I fell completely in-love with what I was doing.
Using my skill and passion for photography to promote the conservation of one of the most lovable creatures I had ever met, sparked an undying dedication in my heart! It became so clear to me that this is what I am MEANT to be doing with my life. I realized my true calling is to be the voice for those who cannot speak; inspiring an awareness in people to ultimately conserve our unique wildlife.
With my background in photography, I realized that it would be important for me to be educated in wildlife conservation from a scientific standpoint. Now, through my degree in wildlife conservation, I am returning to Borneo to conduct critical sun bear research under the guidance of leading sun bear expert and founder of the BSBCC, Siew Te Wong. “ – Stokes
Sun bears face a triple threat: Habitat-loss due to deforestation (palm oil plantations), Poaching & Exploitation, and Illegal pet trade.
An exciting part about helping sun bears is that it also means saving the forests they live in, which means protecting thousands of other endangered species as well! Especially keystone species like the orangutans, proboscis monkeys, pigmy elephants, Sumatran rhinos, hornbills, the Bornean bay cat and many many more. It also means protecting the wild forests that Borneo’s Indigenous tribes count on to survive. Borneo’s forests and all the diversity of wildlife that exists within them CAN survive. I want people to know that sun bears can survive too, but they need our awareness and attention .
Mission: Awareness. Through producing this documentary film, we will inspire a global awareness of what is needed for sun bears to survive.
There is so much we can do to help these charismatic creatures be a part of our world for generations to come… I want to invite you to join in this mission. With our attention and awareness, sun bears can survive.
Together, we will support and document current conservation efforts, while contributing to critical sun bear research. This is how we will share the story of the world’s smallest bear and the plight of its survival.