Wetland Forests Mapping – A Tool For Socio-economic Development And Poverty Reduction
This study found that the main wetland forest in Perak is mangrove and freshwater swamp forest. Perak has big chunk of mangroves of about 40,887 ha mainly in Larut & Matang and Kerian Districts, however, relatively very small size of freshwater swamp of about 779 ha that exist mainly in Kerian District. In fact, Matang Mangrove in Perak is recognised as the best managed mangroves in the world and has been managed sustainably since 1904. As for the peat
swamp forest, there is no more since all of the peatland in Perak have been developed. This study is important in determining the current status of the mangroves and freshwater swamp in the state by providing information on its location and their general status. The information obtained are directly and indirectly support towards sustainable development and resource protected through strong emphasis on the awareness, cooperation practice and adequate data.
In conducting this project, close collaborations with Forestry Department of Perak has been made, more over managing the wetland forest is under the forestry department’s jurisdiction. The ultimate goal of this project was achieved by producing maps on distribution of wetland forests and their current status in the state of Perak. It had been attained by identifying and maps the distribution of the existing wetland forest in the entire state of Perak, and produce complete report comprising information on the status and area extent. The maps produced could serve as a platform for assessment and monitoring of wetland resources. The information obtained in this study is necessary and crucial to be used in managing the wetland forest in Perak. The wetland forest, mainly the mangroves indirectly contributes to the fishing industries that involving a lot of peoples. For example, the Matang Mangrove that had been managed sustainably more than 100 years is directly important for piling and charcoal production, which also contributes for socio-economic development for the surrounding areas. Outputs of this study justify the existence of the wetland forest for socio-development and poverty reduction in the state.