Conservation and life in Borneo

Gardeners’ Question Time

“Dear BBC, I live with more than 20 sun bears and would like to plant something that they would enjoy. What do you suggest?”  Paul – Sandakan

Dear Paul, have you considered ginger? Sun bears love ginger; it’s a juicy and delicious treat that they are sure to enjoy.


Ginger grows in abundance at the edge of the forest here in Sepilok.

The ginger that we generally consume, Zingiber officinale, is only the rhizome -underground stem-  of the plant. When gathering ginger for the bears, only a few of the above-ground stems of each plant are removed.

However, do the bears enjoy the ginger for its taste, its water content or something else altogether? This is something I intend to answer in my next post.


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