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Thursday, September 07, 2006

Portrait of a Lost Child

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Updated: Alternate video format (with better audio)

Walski is extremely saddened by the news that the baby dugong, Puteri Kapas, died yesterday.

What makes Walski really sad is that he was on Pulau Gemia recently, and saw for himself the little manatee/dugong in captivity, being taken care of by the Terengganu Fisheries Department. It must be said that the care givers really put in their heart and really did the best they could to try to tend for the lost little pup.

Puteri Kapas, as she was named, was separated from her mother and found off Pulau Kapas in mid-August of this year. When found, Puteri Kapas was believed to have been only 2 weeks old. It is not known where she came from, or where the mother dugong had gotten to, as these marine creatures are normally not found around Pulau Kapas.

In fond memory of this little creature, Walski put together a short film, from video footage taken at Pulau Gemia on August 30, 2006.

Despite the criticisms Walski has read in The Star today, the folks from the fisheries department tried their very best, and spared no effort to ensure that Puteri Kapas was comfortable, and as well-fed as they could manage to keep her. Walski can, and will, vouch for them. The pool she was put in is a salt-water pool and was definitely large enough for one small baby dugong.
(more thoughts and alternate video format in the full post)

But on the day Walski left Pulau Gemia, the dugong pup did seem to be on its way to recovery, and was a lot more active and lively, compared to a few days earlier when Walski arrived. And so it is indeed perplexing that she ended up dying - maybe it was the destitute loneliness of one young, lost baby.. Such, Walski supposes, is the will of the big guy above...

May God bless those who tried to keep the pup alive and rehabilitated... Rest in peace, Puteri Kapas...

Alternate format of the video (with better audio) - Large file and not 56k friendly!