Tapirs and Seed Dispersal

Posted on Mar 23 2012
Malayan Tapir How are seeds dispersed now that the large animals, elephants and rhinoceros, have been hunted from their ecological habitat? Who took their place? A Tapir? Rhinoceros were once plentiful throughout the Southeast Asian ecosystem. They consumed vast quantities of plants and seeds and moved from one area to another pooping the seeds out from one place to another. However, the demand for rhinos foolishly used as an aphrodisiac in Chinese “medicine” has decimated the population to...

New Discovery in Borneo Cave

Posted on Sep 01 2011
In central Borneo there is this huge cave, I mean like the second biggest in the world and, in my, opinion the smelliest one. As you walk in, there are long, narrow shelf like structures, attached to the side of a cave, suitable as steps for a leprechaun. They are not impressive and I looked at them for about a nano second. Part of these steps are living organisms and form stromatolites. A stromatolite is built when photosynthesizing bacteria (cyanobacteria) produce minerals in a process called...

Soil Samples as a Tool for Rain Forest Preservation

Posted on May 21 2011
The Rainforest can have distinct areas where amphibians and reptiles live. One of the most obvious would be near a pond or riverside ecosystem. The number of critters increases the closer to the water. But what about soil types? Scientists in South America decided to find out. Although the Amazon basin looks like one huge swath of rain forest, it can be divided into two areas. The first rolls from the Atlantic Ocean to Western Amazonia. The forests and the landscapes gradually changes and then...

Orangutan Poetry

Posted on May 21 2011
Senryu (humour haiku) – Orangutan orangutan and us watch each other did an alien separate us? john tiong chunghoo majestic orangutan Majestic Orangutan Oh majestic orangutan it has been years since I saw you last I remember your eyes well such eyes! mirrors glimmering sadness you are on display for the gawkers smug in their superiority you are so much more than they could ever be man, that greedy beast! not fit to be called ape I remember when our eyes met eyes became tongue you spook eloquent touching...

Rain Forest Violates Mosaic Law; Possible lesson for oil palm?

Posted on Apr 23 2011
What happens when ancient gardens and orchards are abandoned and allowed to return to the forest? The Mosaic Theory of Species states the rainforest taking over the old Mayan gardens should eventually show species at random and not in any particular order. Each part of the rain forest should have different tree species with none dominating the other. When this randomness is achieved the rain forest is considered in balance and has returned to its normal state after having been logged or disturbed...

Orangutan Evolution by the Numbers

Posted on Mar 17 2011
The Borneo and Sumatra orangutan subspecies diverged about 1.1 million years ago from a common but now extinct ancestor. The ancestor’s fossils have been found throughout Southeast Asia and looked very similar to the apes of today. But how did we arrive at the two separate species, one in Sumatra and one in Borneo and three subspecies in Borneo? We need to remember that Borneo, Malaya and Sumatra were all connected and the critters roamed back and forth. Then, the glaciers melted, like they are...

Borneo Tom Book Review

Posted on Feb 20 2011
Saturday, February 19, 2011 Borneo Tom by: Tom McLaughlin Borneo Tom by: Tom McLaughlin has it all….romance,travel through Southeast Asia, orangutans and more, all being told with sketches throughout the book instead of images. At first glance you would think it’s a children’s book because the cover is vibrant. However, Borneo Tom is one of those “Don’t judge a book by its cover” books. After caring for his parents in the years before their death, Tom impulsively...

Rare Bear Born in Malaysia Borneo

Posted on Feb 14 2011
A Sun Bear cub was born at the Matang Wildlife Center about 24 km outside of Kuching. A very rare event in efforts to save the endangered species, Volunteer Leo Biddle stated this rivals efforts obtained only by the San Diego Zoo, a world renowned reproductive center for critically endangered wildlife. “We had an idea she may be pregnant because she began acting strangely,” Mr. Leo continued. “Then she dug a huge burrow under the largest tree in the bear enclosure. We have had glimpses of...

Expat Father in Borneo, Malaysia

Posted on Feb 13 2011
I guess being a father at age 60 is like having a grandson except the child never leaves. Dzul, sleeps, eats and poops around here all the time, morning, noon and night. I really don’t mind because my wife has the equipment to feed him so I am relived of sterilizing bottles. I have lost the job of changing diapers. While working on the computer, Dzul told me in no uncertain terms his pampers need to be changed. In mid-thought while writing, I rushed through the process. My wife could not figure...

Seri Aman: A Town in Malaysian Borneo

Posted on Feb 02 2011
I am just getting around to writing about one of the towns we visited before the birth of my son Dzul. We were on our way to Brunei on the only road north in Borneo when he suddenly decided to greet the world a month early a few towns later. Please go to thetentacle.com and click on my name for those adventures. A river town on the Batang Lupar, Seri Aman is known for the tidal bore that travels everyday up the river. Wave height and velocity depends on the moon. A tidal bore, according to the net...

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