Wednesday, 30 June 2010

Sungai Ingei Launching Ceremony

Hi all. This is extremely late in my part, but here is some pictures from the Sungai Ingei Faunal Expedition Launching Ceremony held last year 14 October 2009. During the launching ceremony, Standard Chartered Bank announced its sponsorship for Sungai Ingei Faunal Biodiversity Survey.

This project is supported by the National Heart of Borneo Council and WWF, and the leading institution being Universiti Brunei Darussalam (UBD).

SCB's funding for this Heart of Borneo Project is part of the US$500,000 prize donation from the Race for a Living Planet Environment Challenge which Brunei won earlier 2009. Thanks SCB for your kind support in this important project!!

(From L to R): Dr Joseph K. Charles (Sungai Ingei Expedition Project Leader), Mr Danny Quah (CEO of Standard Chartered Bank - our kind sponsor), Yang Mulia Dato Paduka Hj Hamdillah Hj Abdul Wahab (Former Deputy Minister of MIPR cum National HoB Council Chairman), Dr Glyn Davies (Director Programmes of WWF-UK)

Invited Guests : AP Dr Zohrah Hj Sulaiman (Deputy VC of UBD), Hj Saidin (Director of Forestry Dept), Dr Mikaail Kavanagh (Special Advisor - Brunei, WWF Heart of Borneo Programme)

Invited Guests: Dato' Prof Mohammad (Deputy Dean UBD), Hj Saidin, Samhan Nyawa (Sungai Ingei Field Coordinator)

Monday, 7 June 2010

Aerial Photos of Main Base Camp

The army has been working well with us and on 18th February 2010, they managed to fly over the main base camp using their helicopter and took these beautiful aerial photos of the Sungai Ingei Faunal Expedition main base camp.

Recce 3 (26th February - 4th March 2010)

It has been approximately 2 months since Recce 2 was conducted and the construction of the Sungai Ingei Faunal Expedition main base camp should near its completion. Hence, Dr. Joe Charles (Expedition Leader) and Samhan (Field Coordinator) decided to visit Sungai Ingei at the end of February 2010 to inspect the progress of the construction of the main base camp.

Recce 3 was conducted for 6 days from 26th February - 4th March 2010 and 9 people were involved. Recce 3 occurred during the dry season (water level was very low) and the journey to Sungai Ingei took a much longer time when compared to Recce 2. Apart from inspecting the main base camp, several other tasks were also done:

a) Setting small mammal traps to gather preliminary results
b) Surveying for amphibians at the Batu Melintang waterfall area
c) Retrieving camera traps that were set during Recce 2
d) Putting up 'No Entry' signboards at Sungai Ingei
e) Establish more research trails

Here are some pictures taken during Recce 3:

Recce 3 participants (L-R): Samhan (Field Coordinator),
Haji Saifullah (Boatman), Rosli (volunteer), Salwa (volunteer),
Angus (Chief Guide), Dr. Joe Charles (Expedition Leader),David (Boatman)
and Ang BB (Project Administrator/Camp Manager) [Not in picture: Dr. Ulmar Grafe]

The journey to Sg. Ingei is very long and tiring.
Short breaks at river banks are crucial!

A visit to the village head's residence at Kg. Melilas

Resting inside a longhouse at Kg. Melilas

Haji Saifullah clearing the debris for the boats to pass

There were also some parts of the river where the chainsaw was needed

Navigating the boat below a huge fallen tree that has blocked the river

Sigh of relief as the participants have finally reached the camp site

Tents were set up in the base camp

But some prefer to sleep under the mosquito net!

Inspecting the progress of the base camp

The base camp is near its completion and is
expected to be fully done by early April 2010

Penan worker giving all her effort

Discussions on other things to be done

'No Entry' signboards were put up to warn any potential poachers

Ang BB setting up a small mammal trap

Smiles for Salwa after a hard day's work in the forest

Rosli surveying for amphibians at night

Angus looking very exhausted after spending one full day in
retrieving camera traps from the deeper parts of Sungai Ingei

Most anticipated moment: Dinner Time!

View of the Sungai Ingei Faunal Expedition main base camp
(Picture taken from the other side of the river)

Friday, 4 June 2010

Recce 2 (7th December - 12th December 2009)

Recce 1 was conducted between 26th September - 3rd October 2009 and the main reason for the trip was to determine possible sites to construct the base camp and to establish research trails for the actual expedition. More details regarding about the trip can be found in the previous blog entry.

Another recce trip was conducted between 7th December - 12th December 2009 and 5 people were involved in Recce 2. The main reason for the trip was to check the base camp site, in which permission was granted by the Forestry Department to cut down a few large trees to make way for the construction of the base camp. In addition to that, prayers were conducted by the Malay, Dusun and Iban communities prior to the start of construction works.

L-R: Angus (Chief Guide), Haji Saifullah (Boatman), Azri (Museum officer),
Samhan (Field Coordinator) and Metis (UBD student)

Samhan and Angus ready to head to the field

David (Boatman and Camp Site Foreman)

Beach entrance to Camp Site (chosen by Samhan)

Towering trees on the other side of the river opposite the Camp Site

Checking the Camp Site (trees have been cut down)

Crown Shyness as seen from Camp Site

Chainsaw used in cutting down the trees

Wood from felled trees used as building materials for Camp Site

Expedition's main toilet (still in progress)

Malay prayers (led by Haji Saifullah)

Iban prayers (led by David)

Dusun prayers (led by Angus)

Wooden beam used as base camp's foundation

Raising ceremony of wooden beam to kick-start construction works