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5 Acehnese Saved After Five-Day Standoff With Pack of Tigers

BY NURDIN HASAN (THE JAKARTA GLOBE)

Banda Aceh, TAG –  Five men were rescued from trees in the depths of Sumatra’s Gunung Leuser National Park on Monday, ending a five-day standoff with seven Sumatran tigers who had been circling the tree’s base, prepared to pounce.

Deliverance came when courageous tiger tamers shooed the carnivorous cats away.
The men, loggers from the village of Simpang Kiri in the Aceh Tamiang district, had occupied the tree since last Thursday.
A sixth member of the logging party identified as David, 28, failed to climb a tree. The tigers mauled and ate him.
The confrontation began when a snare set by the loggers to catch deer instead trapped a tiger cub, killing it.
The five remaining loggers took refuge in a tree and contacted relatives via cell phone; however, a rescue party sent from their village was deterred by the sight of four tigers waiting at the tree’s base.
After requesting help from police, a 30-member team of police officers and Army soldiers was dispatched on Saturday.
“I just got a report several minutes ago from the team on location that [the five men] have been rescued after tiger tamers lured the tigers away, deeper into the jungle,” Aceh Tamiang Police chief Adj. Sr. Comr. Dicky Sondani told the Jakarta Globe on Monday afternoon, adding that the team and the five villagers were expected to arrive in Simpang Kiri on late Monday evening.
“The rescue team will also evacuate what’s left of the victim eaten by tigers, and hand the remains over to his family.”
Dicky said the rescue team had planned to use guns to anesthetize the tigers if they could not get the animals to leave, but decided against it, as they were afraid the protected animals would be injured or even killed.
There was also a worry that other tigers in the area could begin attacking villages in retaliation.
The team attempted to shoot firecrackers to scare the tigers away, but it drew the animals toward them instead, searching for the source of the sound.
After consulting with villagers, the team decided to hire the help of tiger tamers. By this time, the pack of tigers waiting at the tree’s base had grown from four to seven.
The tamers arrived on location on Monday and managed to induce the tigers away with “special chants,” Dicky said.
The police chief declined to offer any details of the chants used.
The men were in very weak condition, Dicky said, because they did not have anything to eat or drink for the past five days.
According to the tiger tamers, the tree in which the loggers sought refuge was
located near a cave inhabited by a tiger pack.
“The area is in fact called Tiger Hill because it is inhabited by many of the protected animals,” Dicky said.
He blamed the six villagers for entering the protected area to search for a rare and extremely expensive type of heartwood referred to by locals as “alim wood.”
“Those alim wood hunters appeared to have entered a tiger’s den. It’s their own fault: entering a protected forest because they have been tempted with expensive alim wood.”
Dicky said police would not charge the five loggers.
He said the incident would hopefully serve as a lesson for other villagers planning to enter the forest.
“We’re calling on villagers not to enter the protected forests of the Gunung Leuser National Park because it is very dangerous.”[]

5 Acehnese Saved After Five-Day Standoff With Pack of Tigers 5 Acehnese Saved After Five-Day Standoff With Pack of Tigers Reviewed by Nurdin Hasan on July 09, 2013 Rating: 5

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