Research on large trees in tropical forests bearing fruits
BANDAR SERI BEGAWAN
THE Institute for Biodiversity and Environmental Research (IBER) at Universiti Brunei Darussalam (UBD) held a seminar to update participants on its research on large trees in tropical forests yesterday.
The research focuses on the distribution and function of large trees at the Andulau forest reserve located in the Belait district.
The one-year project is currently halfway through its completion.
IBER research fellow Dr Shengbin Chen said the project aims to establish a long term research infrastructure for studies on tropical trees.
It would also serve as a research platform for not only students and staff at UBD but also those from international institutions.
“We started the project in February and, at present, we have measured the diameter and height of 206 large trees in a plot that measures 500 metres by 600 metres,” said Dr Chen who is also an associate professor at Nanjing Institute of Environmental Sciences at the Ministry of Environmental Protection of China.
In his presentation at the seminar, he said that the plot will serve as the testing ground for future establishment of plots of different forest-types in Brunei.
“Our aim is to measure about 1,000 large trees. We (have established that) the mean density of large trees in Borneo rainforests is approximately 30 trees per hectare,” he said.
Large trees with diameters exceeding 50 centimetres have attracted the attention of biologists and conservationists because they are becoming increasingly rare due to global deforestation.
Dr Chen said that once the Andulau forest plot is established, it will be maintained by IBER – in partnership with the Forestry Department and the Brunei Heart of Borneo initiative under the Ministry of Industry and Primary Resources.
IBER aims to disseminate information on biodiversity and environmental research in not only Brunei but also on the international and regional stage.
The seminar was attended by some 20 participants comprising UBD staff, students and government officers.
The Brunei Times