- Количество слайдов: 61
Environmental Science At Plymouth we are determined to train students to do something to stop the destruction of our planet. Our interdisciplinary course, ranked “Excellent” for the quality of its teaching, has been formally recognised as being one of the best in the country by the only National Subject Centre for Environmental Science being located at Plymouth A key element of our approach is the use of fieldwork to illustrate the points made in the lecture theatre. Our students regularly go out into the field in the UK, but we also believe that fieldwork has to acknowledge the international dimension of environmental problems; which is why we take our students abroad for their residential field course.
Malaysia Making traditional Malay kites Exotic tropical fruits Coconut palms at dusk This brief presentation shows just some of the places & images we encountered on our recent field course in Malaysia. Every student on the trip agrees that visiting Malaysia has transformed their understanding of the environment & has stimulated them into exploring more of the tropics as well as the rest of the world. Why not join us & experience the tropics for yourself?
SE Asia Malaysia straddles the Kra Peninsula & the north coast of Borneo We explore sites on the peninsula We are working only a few hundred km from the equator, so conditions are hot & humid Left: the very essence of the tropics: coconut palms swaying in a warm evening breeze
Malaysia . Upper Dipterocarp rainforest. 1500 m in the Main Range Banjaran Titiwangsa Malaysia contains some of the most biologically diverse ecosystems on Earth, many of which have yet to be explored by science. Can the country develop yet still keep its environment intact? These are some of the issues we will explore.
Malaysia Peninsular Malaysia still contains significant areas of primary rainforest – dark green on the map; but Malaysia wants to achieve developed country status by 2020. The light green areas (agriculture, plantations & other agroecosystems) & the yellow areas (urban & industrial developments) bear testimony to the rate at which they are pushing towards this target Under half the original forest remains compared with less than 100 years ago
Malaysia The world’s largest flower, Rafflesia (right) grows parasitically on the roots of a forest vine. How much longer will this species survive in the face of relentless exploitation of the rainforest? Forest conservation is just one of many issues that students on the field trip will consider The flower of some species of Rafflesia can reach one metre across
Malaysia The Eden Project, Bodelva, Cornwall. Just 45 minutes from the university Before going to Malaysia, our students visit the tropical biome at the Eden Project to familiarise themselves with what they will see & experience in the tropics.
Residential Field Course Malaysia The Gap Road, Selangor: leech socks “catwalk”! Selamat datang! (“welcome” in Malay)
Course objectives Experience one of the most biologically diverse countries on Earth Visit sites of unique interest & scientific importance Sample a country that blends several Asian cultures Work hard in trying conditions – it is hot, humid & you need to be continually vigilant about mosquitoes, leeches, dehydration & your diet But, above all, ENJOY & EXPERIENCE THE TRIP OF A LIFETIME! A student posing as Tarzan on a woody liana (Entada spiralis). These incredible climbers, locally known as monkey ladders, start off on the forest floor & then climb up to the canopy for light – some 50 m above. They are strong enough to swing on & if cut can provide pure water to drink
Kuala Lumpur Above: the Sultan Abdul Samad Building, completed by the British in 1897. Top right: Merdeka Square, where independence from the British was sealed. Bottom right: the state mosque at Shah Alam Kuala Lumpur is the capital of Malaysia & where the course begins
Kuala Lumpur Market famous for its fake watches Islamic architecture Durians in Chinatown Night skyline Masjid Jamek the first mosque Petronas Twin towers. The world’s tallest building
Kuala Lumpur “Will I pass my exams? ” Left, typical pre-war shop-house selling unusual commodities; right: student looking to the future with a visit to a Chinese fortune-teller
Kuala Lumpur Green coconuts provide a cool, refreshing, delicious drink – which also comes in a sterile container. They cost ~15 pence each! Malay schoolgirls pose with three of our students. The Malays are amongst the friendliest people on earth & love to talk to westerners. Right: they recommend green coconut milk to our students to slake their thirst
Kuala Lumpur Panoramic views from the Menara Telekom reveal the regional geomorphology
Batu Caves A tower karst limestone outcrop to the north of KL – a religious shrine & a site of major scientific importance
Batu Caves Hindu Gods greet the faithful at the entrance to the caves Right: the negative face of tourism. A long-tailed macaque joins the consumer society
Batu Caves Exit from the Dark Cave Millions of cockroaches feed off the bat guano We go inside the cave system–with thousands of cockroaches for company
Batu Caves Caveracer snake, length 1. 5 m, digesting a meal Scutigera a carnivorous mitripede approx 15 cm long Snakes, scorpions, spiders, bats & strange predators are everywhere. Many of these organisms occur only in Batu Caves & nowhere else in the world; yet the site contains a quarry! Cave toads Bufo asper are quite big Thousands of bats live within the caves
Klang Gates Ridge The worlds longest quartz ridge at ~17 km, provides unique habitats & is home to rare & endemic plant & animal species, yet development (bottom right) is destroying habitats on this site We have special permission to climb the ridge to observe the unique flora & decide for ourselves how best the site should be managed
Klang Gates Ridge Left: spectacular views of the ridge. Top right we halt half way up the climb, which is exhausting. Bottom right this endemic plant, a member of the coffee genus, is found nowhere else in the world
Rubber Research Institute Rubber plantation, Sungai Buloh The world’s premier research station for rubber Hevea brasiliensis established by the British (1920’s) in the middle of the rainforest. 1. 5 million ha of Malaysia are covered Latex oozing from a tapped by rubber plantations. What are the consequences? rubber tree
Rubber Research Institute Ethylene injection into the trunk to increase latex flow Various techniques are demonstrated. Malaysia was once the top exporter of natural rubber Grafting techniques for propogation
Rubber Research Institute The whole process from planting to the end product is examined, as well as visiting the station’s museum. It surprised us to see a picture of Plymouths’ famous Royal Albert Bridge 10, 000 km away in the heart of Malaysia! Top left: latex looks like milk; top right: pure rubber ready for export to China
Palm Oil Research Institute Traditional method of oil extraction, Africa Oil palm fruits: the source of Malaysia’s recent wealth The development of Malaysia’s most important cash crop is reviewed at this world-class research institute & resident scientists discuss the environmental consequences of oil palm plantations with us. Millions of hectares are covered in oil palm & Malaysia plans to clear yet more land to increase production
Palm Oil Emissions are lower than from petrol Over 2. 5 million ha are covered in plantations (right). Malaysia’s glittering new international airport’s roof (above) represents palm fronds in recognition of the importance of palm oil to the nation’s economy. We are shown a car that runs on a palm oil mix with diesel (top right). Is this the biofuel of the future, from sustainable plantations? We debate the pros & cons with Monocultural stand of Elaeis guineensis, the PORIM’s experts oil palm. Origin: West Africa
Tin The presence of commercially viable quantities of tin attracted the attention of the British in the nineteenth century. The British subsequently “added” Malaya to the British Empire and introduced mechanisation to the local tin industry. Malaysia soon became one of the world’s leading exporters of tin. However, the industry is now in decline, leaving behind a legacy of abandoned workings & derelict land. Top: tin ingots. Bottom: pewter, an alloy containing tin.
Tin A theme park built on a former tin mine site Denkil tin dredge The early economic success of Malaysia was based around alluvial tin deposits. These were worked by the British using floating dredges (top right: the last working dredge in the world, visited by students). Novel reclamation schemes (top left) transformerly derelict sites (e. g. right) into modern money spinners Kinta Valley
Paya Indah Mechanisation means that areas can be quickly cleared Students in a peat swamp forest recently subjected to fire Smoke from Sumatra covering Malaysia Image courtesy of Google Earth This former tin dredging site has been converted into Malaysia’s only Wetland Conservation Centre. Peat swamp forests are vulnerable to clearance (above) and replacement with crops, such as oil palm. We learn how vital such forests are not just nationally but even globally-bottom left: devastating fires can even be seen from space
Paya Indah Exotic epiphytic fern Cyrtostachys renda Manis javania Peat swamp forests are biologically-unique sites that need protection e. g. they are home to the attractive lipstick palm (left) now used in ornamental displays around the world. Above: pangolins (anteaters) are protected by law, but are prized for their meat by locals. Terrapins (left) can also find themselves on the menu.
Putrajaya & Cyberjaya The Prime Ministers Office & the mosque Malaysia is creating two new cities to the south west of Kuala Lumpur: Putrajaya, that will house all government departments & Cyberjaya an “intelligent” city based around the world’s largest fibre optic system. We question this relentless expansionist policy
Kuala Selangor Mangrove conservation area Mangrove swamp on the Straits of Melakka – which we traverse. The going is slow & very sticky underfoot! Right: a palm seed, brought in on the tide, beginning to germinate
Kuala Selangor A new boardwalk provides access for the first few hundred metres, but then it’s into the mud to reach the sea. A baby silvered leaf monkey (right) joined our trek. He took a liking to bourbon biscuits! Presbytis cristata
Kuala Selangor Telescopium spp. Periophthalmodon schlosseri. Mudskippers can walk & even climb trees! Interesting & unusual fauna such as the mudskipper above only occur in mangrove forests. Dozens of species of brightly-coloured crabs compete for food on each incoming tide Uca spp
Kuala Selangor Left: Mudskippers about to mate. Beauty certainly is in the eye of the beholder! Right: lizard hunting crabs
Kuala Selangor Knee roots on Brugeria that allow the tree to breathe Prop roots on Rhizophora make progress difficult Strange root & seed adaptations to these saline & anaerobic environments Right: a student exploring the “soil”! Vivipary in rhizophora
Kuala Selangor Varanus salvator Silvered leaf monkeys, monitor lizards, hornets nests & interesting molluscs are a common sight. Fortunately, salt-water crocodiles are rare!
Fireflies Sungei Selangor Pasir Penambang Fishing village, Bagan Tengkorak We go out onto the river at night to observe fireflies (actually beetles) that occur only in this estuary & one other place in the world. Right: students relax in a riverside restaurant whilst waiting for the sun to go down
Fireflies Sungei Selangor Kampong Kuantan Sungai Selangor at dusk Pteroptyx spp Out on punts after dark to observe rare communities of fireflies (left) which congregate in the mangroves lining the estuary. Developments upstream are threatening the future existence of these organisms.
Genting Highlands We take the cable car to 1500 m to see how hill development can damage these fragile environments Pristine rainforest has been cleared to make a highland playground for the residents of Kuala Lumpur; but at what environmental cost?
Genting Highlands Clearing of hill forest has negative impacts upon the ecology, hydrology, meteorology & stability of mountain ranges. Rainfall patterns change Atmospheric temperatures rise We appraise whether this particular hill development has taken account of such factors, or whether “money rules” Clearance leads to landslides
Main Range Bamboo orchid Looking for snakes & lizards Unresearched rainforest Flowering ginger We climb steadily through granite & basalt hills, stopping to walk along mountain streams and explore virgin rain forest. Right: a landslide halts our progress Road from Bentong to Gap
Main Range Granite, 100 million years younger than that found on Dartmoor, crumbles in a students hand Crested lizard The Main Range is covered in pristine rainforest, but is also geologically very interesting. Weathered granites can be broken by hand! Top right: we are dwarfed by the giant forest trees Right: students negotiate a jungle bridge spanning a river that marks the boundary between two continents that were once thousands of kilometres apart.
Fraser’s Hill Virgin rainforest at 1500 metres. Students follow trails out into the forest to research this pristine environment for themselves Much of this forest has never been fully researched & is the last refuge for Malaysia’s dwindling population of tigers. Ranges that have never been scientifically explored How much longer Night walks through these hills revealed brilliant displays will this area remain of bioluminescence with fireflies & luminescent fungi stunning us with their beauty undisturbed?
Fraser’s Hill Views from the hotel. Virgin rainforest stretches hundreds of kilometres north to the Thai border
Fraser’s Hill Nepenthes gracilis Etlingera sp Insectivorous pitcher plants, exotic ground gingers & wild banana are just some of the rare plants found here. Stick insects are common. Rare birds abound Stick insects are difficult to spot! Musa spp Hornbill
Fraser’s Hill Students spend time both day & night out in the forest studying flora & fauna, soils & the gross geology Bishops Trail Harmless! Centipede, length 25 cm Cicada, length 12 cm Last chance for the Asian tiger: development here could spell the end for the big cats
Fraser’s Hill Liphistius malayensis Trapdoor spider Spiders, forest tortoises, large moths & soldier ants abound Lyssa zampa wingspan 20 cm
Fraser’s Hill Reservoir beginning to fill Students & WWF Malaysia staff After several days at Fraser’s Hill, the journey down to Kuala Lumpur takes in the Sungei Selangor dam: hundreds of hectares of primary rainforest were felled to make way for a dam that will not meet the regional demand for water beyond 2007! We question why it was built & learn more about the politics of logging Forest cleared prior to flooding
Elephant Conservation Centre Kuala Gandah There are less than 1000 elephants left in Malaysia. This centre is trying to conserve them but they face many problems. Students help wash the elephants & question why Malaysia is indifferent to the survival of these animals.
Forest Research Institute Butresses not only support the tree but are also involved with nutrient uptake The trees seem to “sense” their neighbours A research station based in lowland Dipterocarp rainforest. There is so much to see & learn. Buttress roots, canopy shyness, gingers & lizards. The sound of cicadas can be deafening & the barks of gibbons pierce the forest air Zingiber spectabilis Mabuya multifasciata
Forest Research Institute Leeches are endemic to SE Asia. They are little more than a nuisance, causing no pain or infection. Shy forest deer Don’t touch me I’m poisonous! Silvered leaf monkey babies have orange fur
Forest Research Institute Monitor lizard (2 m long), python (caught trying to steal chickens!), & honey-bee hive entrance made of wax. Just a fraction of the rich & exotic fauna on view
Forest Research Institute Left: caterpillars demolishing a fern leaf. Top: Selaginella wildenovii a club moss that changes colour in the breeze on the shady forest floor
Forest Research Institute The canopy walkway – in the dry & the wet. Our chance to study the very roof of the forest
Forest Research Institute A night walk added another dimension to our knowledge of this site & traversing the canopy walkway in the dark was certainly an interesting experience! Above: students looking for scorpions, which are night hunters
Project days Several days are devoted to project work, followed by half-day seminar presentations. Above: students digging soil pits at FRIM. Projects are carried out irrespective of the weather!
Project days Winners of the best seminar presentation are “encouraged” to sample the king of fruits i. e. Durian (left) which reputedly smells like drains & is even banned in hotels! Does bird’s nest drink take the taste away? It’s popularity may be due to its reputation as an aphrodisiac!
Project days We relax in a Malay restaurant after the project presentations. Students take part in the entertainment. Top: Malay “wedding ceremony”. Bottom: not sure what this is about! Right: student demonstrating the versatility of the sari “will you marry me? ”
Conclusion Working in the tropics is exhausting - but you do make friends!
Your next step If you would rather see a monkey in a forest than in a zoo, then why not talk to me about joining one of the best Environmental Science courses in the UK! JN Bull, School of Earth, Ocean & Environmental Sciences, University of Plymouth, PL 4 8 AA Tel: 01752 232987 Fax: 01752 232406 Mobile: 07740 651527 Email: [email protected] ac. uk Terimah kasih (thank you) for looking at this short presentation of just one aspect of the exciting Environmental Science course we offer at Plymouth
Environmental Science Campus Halls of Residence Sutton Harbour, from where the Pilgrim Fathers sailed for America, with the campus in the background Our campus is just five minutes from the sea We offer diving & the underwater environment as a second year module & we are planning overseas field courses that will incorporate diving in the future Future destinations under consideration include China, Africa & islands in the Indian Ocean