University Student Sponsorship Programme 2017-18

This was the 14th year of USSP and OPCFHK sponsored a total of 33 students from eight different universities and colleges. They have headed to five Asian countries including China, Cambodia, Indonesia, Malaysia and Philippines to support the conservation work and research. They have supported research and conservation of wild animals, including Banggai cardinalfish, Chinese crested tern, Chinese sturgeon, dugong and much more, spreading the spirits of conservation through their journeys.


LAM Sim Yee
City University of Hong Kong
KWOK Wun Wun
The Hong Kong University of Science and Technology
Animal Species: Yangtze finless porpoise  
Location: Zhenjiang, China
Date: December 20, 2017 to January 1, 2018
Principal Investigator: Dr. MEI Zhigang, Institute of Hydrobiology, Chinese Academy of Sciences 
Research Focus: Activity pattern and habitat utilisation of Yangtze finless porpoise   
Students' Work:
  • Investigate the activity pattern of Yangtze finless porpoise in Zhenjiang Nature Reserve
  • Study the habitat utilization of Yangtze finless porpoise
  • Assist in predicting the impacts of the habitat after operation of shipping in Zhenjiang Nature Reserve



XU Wanrong, CHAN Wing Mei, YEUNG Tsz Ching
The Hong Kong University of Science and Technology
Animal Species: Chinese white dolphin
Location: Guangxi, China
Date: January 8 to 21, 2018
Principal Investigator: Dr. WU Haiping, Qinzhou University
Research Focus: Studying the effects of large-scale reclamation projects on habitat use of Chinese white dolphin
Students' Work:
  • Assist to investigate the environmental conditions of habitat of Chinese white dolphin by collecting the samples and specimens from the surroundings
  • Compare and analyze the different characteristics of the habitats to understand the relationship between the environment and distribution of Chinese white dolphin



CHENG Chun Man, LIU Hoi Yee, KWAN Yick Hang, CHOI Kin Fung
The Hong Kong University of Science and Technology
WONG Po Ting
Hong Kong Baptist University
LAM Hei Shun Andrew
The University of Hong Kong
CHEN Che Fung
The Open University of Hong Kong
Animal Species: Banggai cardinalfish
Location: Sulawesi and Bali, Indonesia
Date: January 26 to February 11, 2018 and June 18 to July 4, 2018
Principal Investigator: Mrs. Gayatri Lilley, Yayasan Alam Indonesia Lestari
Research Focus: Community-based conservation management of the Banggai cardinalfish 
Students' Work:
  • Assist research team in population surveys to study the impacts of the local fishery on the population of Banggai cardinalfish
  • Participate in the Banggai cardinalfish breeding program
  • Assist in research and restoration of degraded coral reef



WONG Wang Tang, CHEUNG Yuk Yi
City University of Hong Kong
CHENG Ming Yan
The Education University of Hong Kong
Animal Species: Black-faced Spoonbill, greater adjutant, Bengal florican, Sarus crane
Location: Mekong Delta, Cambodia 
Date: June 11 to 25, 2018
Principal Investigator: Mr. Tomos AVENT, Wildfowl & Wetlands Trust 
Research Focus: Sustainable management and conservation of local bird species
Students' Work:
  • Assist team in local community education about understanding and appreciation of wetland biodiversity
  • Support the cooperation between government departments, thus raise awareness of conservation on wetland



Hong Kong Baptist University
YEUNG Choi Ying
The Hong Kong University of Science and Technology
Animal Species: Chinese crested tern
Location: North Sulawesi, Indonesia
Date: February 5 to 15, 2018
Principal Investigator: Mr. Simba Chan, BirdLife International Tokyo Office
Research Focus: Study and conservation of migratory Chinese crested terns (Thalasseus bernsteini) in China and Indonesia 
Students' Work:
  • Participate in field surveys to study the migration route and wintering ground of the Chinese crested tern
  • Support the conservation of wintering ground



The Chinese University of Hong Kong
LO Sum Yi
The University of Hong Kong
Animal Species: Chinese sturgeon
Location: Shanghai, China
Date: June 9 to 19, 2018
Principal Investigator: Dr. ZHAO Feng, East China Sea Fisheries Research Institute, Chinese Academy of Fishery Sciences
Research Focus: Research on competition stress of introduced sturgeon species on the wild population of Chinese sturgeons 
Students' Work:
  • Understand the competition stress on Chinese sturgeons from the wild population of sturgeon species
  • Assist in food source survey for Chinese sturgeon
  • Participate in community education work about Chinese sturgeon in local museums



LEUNG Cheuk Wing, FUNG Tin Wai, FONG Tsz Ying
The Chinese University of Hong Kong
NG Tsz Wing
The Hong Kong University of Science and Technology
Animal Species: Dugong
Location: Palawan, Philippines
Date: May 11 to 23, 2018
Principal Investigator: Mr. Reynante RAMILO, Community Centred Conservation (C3)
Research Focus: Community-driven monitoring and conservation of dugongs and assessment on the effect of coastal development to dugongs
Students' Work:
  • Participate in the survey and monitoring of dugong foraging behaviours and seagrass bed
  • Assist the C3 outreach programme to increase local awareness to dugong conservation
MAN Hiu Tung, LIU Ka Wing
The Chinese University of Hong Kong
Animal Species: Giant panda
Location: Gansu, China
Date: June 16 to 28, 2018
Principal Investigator: Prof. LU Mingyao, Wild Animal and Plant Management Authority, Gansu
Research Focus: Monitoring of giant panda in nature reserves in Gansu
Students' Work:
  • Assist the installing infrared camera and collecting data to monitor the population and activities of wild giant panda
  • Support the education work of the outreach team



YU Tsz Ying, SIN Sum Yin
The University of Hong Kong
Animal Species: Manta Ray
Location: Bali, Indonesia
Date: May 14 to 23, 2018
Principal Investigator: Dr. Andrea MARSHALL, Marine Megafauna Foundation
Research Focus: Study the impacts of microplastics on megafauna
Students' Work:
  • Assist the assessment of the impacts of microplastic on manta ray and determine whether manta ray would ingest plastic in water
  • Raise awareness of ocean protection and manta ray conservation



WONG Kwan Ho, HAU Chak Leong
The University of Hong Kong
Animal Species: Orangutan
Location: Northern Sumatra, Indonesia
Date: May 24 to June 7, 2018
Principal Investigator: Mr. Panut HADISISWOYO, Orangutan Information Centre (OIC)
Research Focus: Addressing human‐orangutan conflict in agricultural landscapes
Students' Work:
  • Assist team in conducting regular field monitoring
  • Assist in the work of orangutan rescue team



Hong Kong Baptist University
Animal Species: Carnivores including snow leopard, wolf and dhole
Location: Sichuan, China
Date: June 14 to 30, 2018
Principal Investigator: Mr. JIN Senlong and Ms. LIU Jun, Woolong National Nature Reserve
Research Focus: Studying diversity and distribution of carnivores and conducting community education work
Students' Work:
  • Assist in setting up and collecting data from infra-red camera trap to monitor the carnivore species in Sanjiang
  • Take part in youth-engaging education programmes



LIN Wei Ting, CHEN Jun An, WU Peng Yu
The Hong Kong Academy for Performing Arts
Animal Species: Sunda pangolin, Asian elephant, reticulated python, Malay civet, bearded pig, Philippine slow loris
Location: Sabah, Malaysia
Date: April 14 to 27, 2018
Principal Investigator: Dr. Benoit GOOSSENS, Danau Girang Field Centre (DGFC)
Research Focus: Study of impacts of habitat fragmentation and threatens to multiple species
Students' Work: 
  • Producing a documentary about pangolin research and conservation in DGFC and Hong Kong
  • Interview researchers and citizens in and around DGFC