WEST PAPUA BIRD SMUGGLERS FOILED

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JAKARTA, Indonesia (August 2, 2000 – Indonesian Observer/Kabar Irian)--Forest rangers from the Natural Resources Conservation Body (KSDA) in West Papua (Irian Jaya) have foiled two attempts to smuggle endangered black parrots and parakeets out of the remote province to Java.

Local KSDA head Sutedja was quoted yesterday by Antara as saying the first seizure took place when the Umsini motorboat was about to leave West Papua for Java on Monday night.

Forest ranger Derek Makabori discovered 10 black parrots inside a box in a cabin on the boat, which had berthed at Jayapura Port, said Sutedja.

Another ranger, Benny Tiba, on Monday, also found two black parrots and two parakeets kept inside a room at Sentani Airport, some 42 kilometers (25 miles) west of Jayapura.

The four endangered birds were about to be flown to Jakarta aboard a Merpati Airlines flight. All 14 birds will be returned to their habitats soon, said Sutedja.

KABAR IRIAN ("Irian News") Website: http://www.irja.org/ 

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