Period: 29 October 2006 - 9  December 2006. Country: Indonesia
(1) Natural Resource Management of Indigenous and Migrant Communities in Riau, Sumatra, Indonesia
Retno Kusumaningtyas  (Division of Southeast Asian Area Studies)
Key Words: Migrants, Indigenous, Shifting Cultivation, Oil Palm Plantations, Conservation

Flying squad, a team of 4 trained elephants patrols around the village guarding the village from wild animal intrusion to the settlement.
Labors from oil palm plantations
A villager is skinning rice
(2)  To understand the socio-economic conditions of the communities surrounding a national park To investigate a suitable management system for the national park that integrates the interests of surrounding communities

(3)  The study, conducted near Tesso Nilo National Park, found that indigenous communities and migrant communities practiced a different type of natural resource management/agriculture. Most migrant communities use a nucleus-small holder system of oil palm plantations. Meanwhile, most indigenous communities in the area engage in shifting cultivation and forest product harvesting. An analysis of the income derived from their activities shows that the small-holder oil palm plantations provide a better and more stable income for household in Tesso Nilo. The fact that there is only limited land available for practicing shifting cultivation also contributes to the low productivity of shifting cultivation activities. A recent trend that was observed during my fieldwork is that indigenous communities have also begun to plant perennial trees to establish plantations (such as oil palm and rubber).
           These communities are working, together with the government, commercial enterprises, and NGOs, to establish a collaborative management system for the area near Tesso Nilo National Park. The initiative came about due to the heavy pressure from illegal logging and poaching inside the national park, which led to a degradations of the forests as well as intrusions by wildlife into community settlements and agricultural land, causing losses to the surrounding national park. The effort is still ongoing, with negotiations and consolidations among the actors (community, government, commercial enterprises, and NGOs) underway.

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