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Story Publication logo November 14, 2022

Customary Landscapes, Potential Conservation Areas on Bangka Island (bahasa Indonesia)

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On Bangka Island, the forest is only left in the hills, which is the last "moral" of the people on...

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This story excerpt was translated from bahasa Indonesia. To read the original story in full, visit Mongabay. You may also view the original story on the Rainforest Journalism Fund website here. Our website is available in English, Spanish, bahasa Indonesia, French, and Portuguese.


  • Through experience and observation, Indigenous people have created a number of valuable places, as a result of their intimate relationship with nature, for hundreds of years. On Bangka Island, these places can be read from the division of roles of shamans in hills, rivers, and the sea.
  • In the approach of Indigenous people on Bangka Island, places of value that are the location of rituals or prohibitions are actually allowed to be utilized by the community. However, there are rules, which have been guarded by the shamans.
  • The connection between the place [customary land/region] and the surrounding community is very strong. The cultural preservation movement must also be linked to efforts to establish a community's customary territory. The most important thing for Indigenous peoples is the places or customary territories that are of value to them, and then the knowledge or cultural products.
  • Currently, there are a number of "sacred" hill or mountain landscapes that are used as ritual sites by the community, which have the status of conservation areas. These include Gunung Maras National Park [806.91 hectares], Bukit Mangkol National Forest Park [6,009.51 hectares], and Gunung Permisan Nature Park [3,149.69 hectares].

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Through experience and observation, Indigenous people have created a number of sacred places as a result of their intimate relationship with nature over hundreds of years.

On Bangka Island, these places can be interpreted from the division of shaman roles in hills, rivers, and the sea. In a unified landscape, these areas are considered important to protect for the sake of future survival.

"The existence of shamans who specifically handle rivers, hills, and the sea on Bangka Island is a sign that the Bangka region must be protected. Both visible and invisible," said Janum, the Customary Chief of the Jerieng Tribe in Pelangas Village.


Around the foot of Mangkol Hill, mining activities are changing the surrounding river landscape. Image by Nopri Ismi/Mongabay Indonesia. Indonesia, 2022.

The rocky image on the granite rock at the top of Kepale Hill is used as a sacred area for a number of communities, so it is protected. Image by Nopri Ismi/Mongabay Indonesia. Indonesia, 2022.

Customary landscapes on Bangka Island have provided forest products for hundreds of years for the sustainability of human life. Image by Nopri Ismi/Mongabay Indonesia. Indonesia, 2022.

Rituals are interpreted as a form of maintaining harmony between humans and nature. Each ritual point is considered important to protect. Image by Nopri Ismi/Mongabay Indonesia. Indonesia, 2022.

For hundreds of years, customary landscapes have been an important area for the lives of people on Bangka Island. Image by Nopri Ismi/Mongabay Indonesia. Indonesia, 2022.

A number of customary landscapes protected by the community store high biodiversity, one of which is medicinal plants. Image by Nopri Ismi/Mongabay Indonesia. Indonesia, 2022.

Mentilin [Cephalopachus bancanus], one of the endemic and rare animals on Bangka Island. Image by Nopri Ismi/Mongabay Indonesia. Indonesia, 2022.

Many of the remaining forests on Bangka Island are located in hilly areas that are ritual points or sacred areas for local Indigenous peoples. Image by Nopri Ismi/Mongabay Indonesia. Indonesia, 2022.

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