Sulawesi Flying Fox

In the local language, bats are called poniki

Program in numbers

  • 2018

    Year started
  • ~63.000

    Maximum number of bats
  • 420

    People involved


  • 1
    Flying fox population monitoring
  • 2
    Ecotourism preparation
  • 3
    Introduction of new members
  • 4
    Education and knowledge
    Increase the love for nature that you have.
A small introduction

What we do
(so far)

A team member of PROGRES is standing on the beach, looking into the sky. He is counting the amount of bats that are leaving their nest to look for food. This activity is repeated regularly as part of the conservation program.

Flying fox population monitoring

The first systematic and long-term monitoring of flying fox populations in Indonesia. The monthly size of the population becomes a parameter for the success of conservation efforts carried out.


The number of flying foxes on Mantawalu Daka Island is calculated twice each month. Now, the young people in the village can already do the calculations. Calculations are done at dusk when they come out of their nests. At the beginning of the program, the number of flying foxes was only 300 .. Now it has reached almost 30,000 ! These results show that our conservation programs are having a good impact on kalong populations.

Diet Study

Now young people in the village can do research on flying foxes. They catch the flying fox with a net, collect pollen in the hair, take morphometric measurements, and release the flying fox back into its nature. For protection, the people involved are given rabies vaccinations.


Ecotourism preparation

Together with people from the community, PROGRES is cleaning up the beach. There are about fifteen people in this photo who are filling big white bags with trash.
JUNE 2019
Cleaning up a beach area full of trash
Garbage is still strewn across our village, especially on the beach. People are still dumping garbage on the beach or the sea. Sometimes, garbage on land is eventually carried by rainwater and collected on the beach. As a result, the beach became the dirtiest place in our village. Therefore, we decided to clean up this area. The tourists who will later come will take a boat from here, so we want to make sure that the beach is always clean and welcoming.
This is an information board, built by PROGRES on a small island to inform tourists who visit the island.
JULY 2019
Construction of information boards
To cross to Mantawalu Daka Island, tourists will take a boat from our village. With the information board about conservation activities, tourists can learn about flying foxes and we can also explain the efforts that the village has made to protect them. The information board 'Welcome to Poniki Conservation Area' contains about the conservation status of Mantawalu Daka Island, an explanation of the types of flying foxes nesting on the island, the benefits they have for humans and ecosystems, and updates on village activities.
Four people are building an observation tower. The foundation (4 meters high) is almost finished now. Eventually this tower can be used for population monitoring of Flying Foxes as part of the conservation program.
Building an observation tower
To support research activities and monitor the kalong population on the island, we built an observation tower. This eight-meter high tower is also built for tourists who want to see the flying foxes and beautiful views of the island and the surrounding sea. People from the village worked together to transport materials by boat to the island and build towers together.
Several youth of the village and together they are gardening in the new green areas of the island.
Creating a beautiful village
Our village is quite arid. In order to be more appealing, we did a greening program. Currently, we have just received seedlings of braids and mangoes to be planted in front of our house. To keep the new tree seeds, we also followed a training of making organic fertilizers to be watered into the tree periodically to thrive. Now, 25 mango seeds have been planted in the village.

Introduction of new members

On August 17, 2020 - Introducing the local youth group of Salu to conservation programs. Together we also celebrated the 17th anniversary of 75th Indonesia Independence Day.

The location is not too far from the village, about 40 minutes. At the time of our trip, it was greeted by rain and clouds.

Roughly thirty or forty people sitting outside in a big circle, surrounded by trees.
Four team members of PROGRES, sitting in a circle during the evening. One person is holding a flying fox and another person is taking samples from its fur. This is part of the conservation program.
This is a Sulawesi Flying Fox mom with her child. They are both hanging upside from a branch, surrounded by green leaves and other branches.
Capacity building
Conservation and ecotourism programs can only be successful and sustainable if the capacity of the community is built.
Building skills
Therefore, we conduct various trainings, especially for youth in the village, such as financial bookkeeping training, delivering materials, writing activity proposals.
Dream big
It is hoped that the village youth will lead conservation and ecotourism programs in the village independently

Program supporter(s)

These are the supporters of our conservations efforts for the Sulawesi Flying Fox. Click on their name to visit their website.

Current supporter

Stiftung Artenschutz

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