Our People

Ledjie Taq - Chief of the Wehea Dayak Tribe, Berau, East Kalimantan

Nature Hero YKAN



Nature Hero Ladjie Taq © YKAN


Nature Hero Yayasan Konservasi Alam Nusantara

Nature Hero


In 2004, the Wehea Dayak community faced imminent forest loss. In response to this looming threat, the community designated the Wehea Forest as a "local protected forest." Leading this conservation initiative was Ledjie Taq, the Chief of the Dayak Wehea tribe in East Kalimantan. Securing broad support, Ledjie Taq engaged the local Dayak community, the government, and the private sector in a council meeting where they collectively endorsed the declaration of 38,000 hectares of abandoned timber concessions as 'protected land' under traditional Wehea Dayak 'customary' laws. The motivation behind safeguarding the Wehea Forest is its significance as a source of water, medicinal plants and non-timber forest products. Ledjie Taq also recognizes the Wehea Forest's crucial role in safeguarding his people's culture. Losing the forest would mean losing important traditions and ceremonies.

To shield the protected forest from illegal activities, the Wehea Dayak set up a group of forest rangers known as Petkuq Mehuey (PM). The PM is made up of young individuals from the local community who are dedicated to protecting the forest. They spend up to three months patrolling the borders, deterring illegal loggers, collecting data on flora and fauna in the Wehea Forest, and contributing to implementing new programs and initiatives.

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