♠ Posted by amsran in Mahua Crocker Range Park Fieldtrip at 5:52 AM
Mahua Crocker Range Park Fieldtrip
The fieldtrip was held at Mahua Crocker Range Park on 24th until 25th August 2007. The purpose of this fieldtrip is to appreciate the importance of tropical ecosystems and understand the significances of its conservation through the following the objective. Firstly, to introduce lowland tropical rain forest of Sabah (Mahua, Crocker Range Park). Secondly, to understand the interaction among plants, animals and human. Thirdly, to understand the services derived from tropical forests, e.g. the value of tropical forest in global climate, carbon sequestration, clean water supply, flood control and others. Lastly, to instill in our minds the value of conservation by letting them compare undisturbed forest (primary forest) and highly disturbed forests (i.e. that can be seen along the way to Kinabalu Park). For this report, firstly we want to introduce about the Crocker Range Park.
Crocker Range Park (CRP) is located in the west coast of Sabah. The park is slender-shape approximately 75km length and 15km width, run along northeast-comprising an area of 139, 919 ha, about twice the size of Singapore. The park lies within 8 districts. The elevation ranges between 100m to 2050m at the peak of Mt. Alab. Most areas of the park are covered by rainforest. Traditional small scale cultivation is the main human activity surrounding the park area. The Sabah Parks has managed the area since 1984 in order to conserve the area.
From the park history in the legal status of Crocker Range area, in 1963 Sabah becomes independent from Britain and joins the federation of Malaysia. After that in 1968 Forest Enactment was approved and in 1969 Crocker Range to be as a Forest Reserve. In 1984 Park enactment was approved and Crocker Range Park (excluding Crocker Range Forest Reserve, Rafflesia Conservation area and road side of Penampang-Tambunan).
Beside that, the goal of park management at Crocker Range Park is to maintain ecosystem function of the park and surrounding areas for the protection of rich flora and fauna habitats in the Crocker Range bioregion in western Sabah and the preservation of river watersheds flowing out from the park. It is also to ensure sustainable benefit for the people of Sabah through better park management. Variety of activities in park management especially to conserve the ecosystem and landscape of the park through regular monitoring, to promote tourism activities inside the park in accordance to carrying capacity and to maintain the park boundary for the protection of natural habitats inside the park.
In the field trip, to achieve the objective we had three activities like night trekking, bird watching and forest trekking.
2.1.0 To recognize lowland tropical rain forest of Sabah (Mahua, Crocker Range Park).
As we know, Crocker Range Park characterized as a lowland tropical rain forest. Rain forest means forest with warm, moist tropical lowlands. It is characterized by multilayered structure with many trees exceeding 30 meters in height; lianas and epiphytes can be observed. Recognizing its importance to the state of Sabah, Crocker Range Park has been gazette as a park under the jurisdiction of Sabah Parks. Crocker Range Park is also known as the spine of Sabah. Lying north-east and south-westerly, this range divides Sabah into two- the west, and interior eastern parts. It stretches from south of Kundasang in the north to Tenom in the South. Crocker Range Park serves as a watershed for the west coast and the immediate interior hinterland. There are a number of major rivers such as a Sungai Kimanis flowing westwards, Sungai Moyog, Sungai Padas, Sungai Pegalan, Sungai Pampang, Sungai Bayaiyo and several other tributaries flowing southward and inward.
2.1.1 To understand the interactions among plants, animals and human.
At Mahua Crocker Range Park, to understand the interactions among plants, animals and human we have three activities:-
1.1 To recognize animals which active at the night with night trekking activity.
1.2 To recognize birds in the morning with watching bird activity.
1.3 To recognize lowland tropical rain forest with jungle trekking activity.
1.3.1 For these activities we must know about the ecosystem function or services, vegetation, growth forms, some common characteristics of tropical trees and forest animals.
3.0 OBSERVATION FOR THE NIGHT TREKKING
The scientific classification frog is an class amphibian in the order Anurans, phylum Chordates and in the kingdom Animalia. Adult frogs are characterized by long hind legs, a short body, webbed digits, protruding eyes and the absence of a tail. Most frogs have a semi-aquatic lifestyle, but move easily on land by jumping or climbing. They typically lay their eggs in puddles, ponds or lakes; and their larvae, called tadpoles, have gills and develop in water. Adult frogs follow a carnivorous diet, mostly of arthropods, annelids and gastropods. Frogs are most noticeable by their call, which can be widely heard during the night or day, mainly in their mating season.
The morphology (structure) of frogs is unique among amphibians. Compared with the other two groups of amphibians namely salamanders and caecilians, frogs are unusual because they lack tails as adults and their legs are more suited to jumping than walking. The physiology of frogs is generally like that of other amphibians (and differs from other terrestrial vertebrates) because oxygen can pass through their highly permeable skin. Certain frogs change colour between night and day, as light and moisture stimulate the pigment cells and cause them to expand or contract.
The scientific classification ants is an class Insecta in the order Hymenoptera, phylum Anthropoda, kingdom Animalia and the family is Vespoidea. Ant bodies, like those of other insects, have an exoskeleton, meaning their bodies are externally covered in a protective casing, as opposed to the internal skeletal framework of humans and other vertebrates. Ants do not have lungs, a colorless blood, the hemolymph, runs from their head to rear and back again along a long tube.
The ants have three main divisions of the ant body are the head, mesosoma and metasoma or gaster.The head of an ant has many important parts. They also have three small ocelli on the top of the head, which detect light and dark. Most ants have poor to mediocre eyesight to some are blind altogether. A few have exceptional vision though, such as Australia’s buldog ant. Also attached to the head of an ant are two antennae "feelers". The antennae are special organs that help ants detect chemicals, including those used in communication, as well as a sense of touch. Ants release pheromones to communicate with each other and the antennae pick up these chemical signals. The head also has two strong jaws, the mandibles, which are used to carry food, manipulate objects, construct nests, and for defense. In some species there is also a small pocket inside the mouth to hold food for passing to others.
Leeches are annelids comprising the subclass Hirudinea. The scientific classification is an class Clitellata, in kingdom animalia and genus Macrobdella. The leeches are fresh water, terrestrial and marine leeches. Like their near relatives, the oligochaeta, they share the presence of a cllitelum. Like earthworms, leeches are hermaphrodites. The leech species are carnivorous. Some are predatory, feeding on a variety of invertebrates such as worms, snails, insect larvae, crustaceans, while a very few are haemophagic parasitic blood-sucking leeches, feeding on the blood of vertebrates such as amphibians, reptiles, waterfowl, fish, and mammals (including humans). They all have an anterior (oral) sucker formed from the first six segments of their body, which is used to connect to a host for feeding, and can also release an anesthetic to prevent the host from noticing the leech.
The butterfly scientific classification is an insect of the order Lepidoptera. The kingdom an Animalia and the phylum is Anthropoda. Butterflies are notable for their unusual life cycle with a larval caterpillar stage, an inactive pupal stage and a spectacular metamorphosis into a familiar and colourful winged adult form, and most species being day-flying, they regularly attract attention.
Presently butterflies are classified in three superfamilies, hedylodia , consisting of the 'American moth-butterflies', Hesperioidea , consisting of the 'skippers' and Papailionoidea or 'true butterflies'. The last two superfamilies are probably sister taxa, so the butterflies collectively are thought to constitute a natural group or clade. Butterflies do not experience a nymph period, but instead go through a pupal stage which lies between the larva and the adult stage (imago). Butterflies are termed as holometabolous insects, and go through complete metamorphosis.
The scientific classification of spider is an class Arachnida. The kingdom is Animalia and the phylum is Athropoda. Spiders have only two body segments (tagmata) instead of three: a fused head and thorax (called a cephalotorax or prosoma) and an abdomen (called the opisthosoma). All spiders have eight legs, although a few ant-mimicking species use their front legs to imitate antennae, which spiders lack. Their eyes are single lenses rather than compound eyes, ranging from simple light/dark-receptors to eyes rivaling those of a pigeon (some jumping spiders). The spider life cycle progresses through three stages is embryonic, the larval, and the nympho-imaginal.
Spiders, have only two body segments (tagmata) instead of three. It’s a fused head and thorax (called a cephalotorax or prosoma) and an abdomen (called the opisthosoma ). The exception to this rule are the assassin spiders, whose cephalothorax seems to be almost divided into two independent units. Except for a few species of very primitive spiders (family liphidtiidae), the abdomen is not externally segmented. The abdomen and cephalothorax are connected with a thin waist called the pedicle or the pregenital somite, a trait that allows the spider to move the abdomen in all directions. This waist is actually the last segment (somite) of the cephalothorax and is lost in most other members of the Arachnida (in scorpions it is only detectable in the embryos).
A worm is an elongated, slender, soft-bodied invertebrate animal. Invertebrates are animals that lack a backbone. Worms are so different from each other that they have not been classified under a single group. Worms are universal in distribution, occurring in marine, freshwater, and terrestrial habitats. Some worms that live in the ground help to condition the soil. Several other worms may be free-living, or nonparasitic. There are worms that live in freshwater, seawater, and even on the seashore. Ecologically, worms form an important link in the food chain in virtually all the ecosystem of the world.
Worms usually have a cylindrical, flattened, or leaf-like body shape and are often without any true limbs or appendages. Instead, they may have bristles or fins that help them move. Many worms have sense organs that can detect environmental change. A few may even have light-sensing organs. Some worms reproduce sexually. Hermaprodothism, the condition in which a single individual possesses both male and female reproductive parts, is common in many groups of worms. Asexual reproduction, whereby new individuals develop from the body cells of another, also occurs in some worms.
A cicada is an insect of the order Hemiptera, suborder Auchynorrhyncha, in the superfamily Cicadoidea, with large eyes wide apart on the head and usually transparent, well-veined wings. Cicadas live in temperate to tropical climates where they are among the most widely recognized of all insects, mainly due to their large size and remarkable acoustic talents. Cicadas have prominent eyes set wide apart on the sides of the head, short antennae protruding between or in front of the eyes, and membranous front wings. Desert cicadas are also among the few insects known to cool themselves by sweating, while many other cicadas can raise their body temperatures voluntarily to around 22 °c above the ambient temperature.
The scientific classification of beetle is an class Insecta, in phylum Animalia and the kingdom is Anthropoda. Beetles can be found in almost all habitats, but are not known to occur in the sea or in the polar regions. They interact with their ecosystem in several ways. On the one hand, they feed on plants and fungi, break down animal and plant debris, and eat other invertebrates. The beetles' bodies are divided into three sections: the head, the thorax, and the abdomen. When viewed from below, the thorax is that part from which all three pairs of legs and both pairs of wings arise. The abdomen is everything posterior to the thorax.
Beetles have mouthparts similar to those of grasshoppers. Of these parts, the most commonly known are probably the mandibles, which appear as large pincers on the front of some beetles. The eyes are compound and may display remarkable adaptability, as in the case of whirligig beetles (family Gyrinidae), in which the eyes are split to allow a view both above and below the waterline. The beetle antennae are primarily organs of smell, but may also be used to feel out a beetle's environment physically. They may also be used in some families during mating, or among a few beetles for defense.
4.0 BIRD WATCHING
Second activity is Bird Watching, for this activities we only have two big group, one group combine from group 3A to 3C and other one group combine from group 3D to 3F.
In the bird watching activity, we are required to be listening to the birds sound and also watching the bird which inhabit in the Mahua, Crocker Range Park. The area for the bird watching is located at the western part from the Mahua Visitor Centre. This activity supposes start at 5.30 am to 6.30 am. Before we start the activity, the facilitator gives us some briefing what should we do with the bird watching section. According to her, in Mahua, Crocker Range Park has more than 300 species of bird have been recorded.
After the briefing we are going by our own group without the facilitator. When we go along the western part of the Mahua, Crocker Range Park we start hearing the natural sound and we tried to find out what species of the bird. Everyone is order not to make noised because its can disturbed the birds. Along the bird watching activity, we can see many birds flying and hearing the bird sound but that is difficult for us to identify the species.
1. To listen the natural sound in the forest
2. To identify the species of the bird
3. Study the birds inhabit in the forest
4. What we gain with this natural sound
The methodology that we used in this activity is also through observed and hearing like in the night trekking activities. It was so amazing when we can see the birds closely. We can also listening to the bird’s sounds surroundings the forest in the early morning. Not that all, we also used a camera to capture the birds pictures but unluckily we can not get any bird’s picture closely.
Besides that, we are not forgotten to discuss with other groups about what species that they hear or see. By this we can get some information that our group did not get. It also helps us to differentiate the species of birds in the Tropical Rainforest. After one hour, we going back to the camp and do our discussion.
4.3 RESULT AND DISCUSSION
In this activity, we can see that there are several species of birds. We also can see birds in motion where they looking for food around the forest or standing on the trees. Besides that, we also can listen to the sound of birds which is very natural feeling when we walking along the way inside the forest. With the sound of birds we have to identify what species of the birds have producing this kind of sounds. In addition, in the different period we can see the different species of birds or hear the different sounds of birds. In the different places we also can see the different species of birds so we can know that which area is normally for which species of birds.
5.0 FOREST TREKKING
The Crocker Range Park is located on the southern section of the Crocker Mountain Range In Northwest Borneo, Sabah, Malaysia. A large extent of tropical rainforest highland divides the west coast of Sabah from remote interior regions of the state. The Croker Range consist of several rugged and uninhabitable peaks over 1500m, including Mountain Alab (1964m), Mountain Tambuyukon (2579m), Mountain Trusmadi (2642m), and Mountain Kinabalu (4218m). The rich forest resources that have been most vulnerable to unsustainable explotation here include both timber and non-timber products. In an effort to conserve the integrity of the forest habitats of Croker Range, the Sabah government had declared two National Parks within the range. To the southwest is the Crocker Range Park and to the north is the Kinabalu Park.
The Crocker Range Park is one of conservation area. This area is tropical rainforest where there are many species and habitat here. From the forest tracking we look in this forest be found many trees.
5.1 OBJECTIVEThis observation there several objectives to be show to me what the important forest for the ecosystem.
5.1.0 To introduce about the lowland tropical rainforest.
Before that we as a student don’t have an experience enter the forest. This is the first time we are camping at Mahua Crocker Range Park. The condition in this forest is very good because this area is not yet exploitation for the timber activities. When we enter in the forest we can look, many big trees round up forest. During us to go the waterfall we look a variety type of trees in this forest. Also, we can look layers in the forest at Mahua lowland tropical rainforest. Beside that, we also get see a wonderful waterfall in this forest and they called Mahua waterfall.
5.1.1 To see the interaction between human, animal and plant.
When we walk in this forest we can see a lot of diversity interaction. Interaction was occurring because the living thing must have a food, water, light and then protection. This factor was making this forest dynamic. For interaction between plants and plants, to get parasitic interaction, for example is lianas. When we enter the forest at mahua lowland tropical rainforest, to obtain variety plants and animals which it is to depend between each other. In this forest also, we did see climber plants which the species plants will climb for to get a food and other.
5.1.2 To see the important lowland tropical rainforest.
The variety biodiversity which get to see at lowland tropical rainforest and it is also having are important for population in this. It is because the forest act as water catchment area in conservation environment quality with to absorb and filter rain water before distribute to the river. Besides, it to get enactive that to supply water country does not discontinuous along year. The forest also act as a lid a nature earth and protect the soil from erode water, and air. The function trees also as a fastener with way to grip soil with the root. Altogether to get conservation environment quality with pollute and prohibited with hideous event like lightning flood. Beside, many more about important lowland tropical rainforest and it is must to conserve in order that does not destroy for the important them.
5.2 CHARACTERIZED OF PLANT IN TROPICAL RAINFOREST
In this lowland tropical rainforest at Mahua there are five layers of trees. The first layers is emergent. This emergent is consisting of the bigger and tallest trees whose crowns appear broad and spreading above the main canopy 40-45 meters in height. The second layer is main canopy. Main canopy is a continuous layer of tree canopies at 20-30 meters in height. In this layer contains species from range families. The third layer of trees in tropical rain forest is understory. This layer consists of trees5-20 meters tall. Many young individuals of trees of the emergent and main canopy are found here. After the layer understory is a shrub layer. Shrub layer consists of trees up to 5 meters tall and fairly open. Comprise palms and saplings of emergent, main canopy and understory trees. The last layer is forest floor. Forest floor consists of seeding and herbs.
In this there are different leave between big trees and the small trees at the forest floor. It is because the big trees want to decrease the evaporation because the big trees has many leave differential a small tree although have a big leave the small tree have a lees of leave.
The layer of trees in tropical rainforest
In the tropical rainforest, other type of plants is occurring like climbers. There are generally two types of climbers that is Herbaceous climbers and Woody climbers. Herbaceous climbers are usually small and they have very thin, soft stems. Sometime, these climbers can cover a whole tree with their leave. Some of them also produce fruits that other animal eat as food. Woody climbers have hard stems almost like the stems of small tree. Lianas are easy to see from a distance because their stems are quite thick and big.
In this lowland tropical rainforest, we also see the epiphytes plant. Epiphytes plant that plants on others for supports and can make on food. In Mahua we look many epiphytes a round this forest. Ferns and orchids constitute to majority of Malaysian epiphytes plants.
6.0 INTERACTION BETWEEN HUMAN, ANIMAL AND PLANT
There are many interactions in this forest like to get a food, to get the water, light and also as a protection. From the observation, we look there are three interaction in this forest that is human and plants, animal and plants and plants and plants.
For the interaction human and plants, we look this forest is suitable for the camping and as a place to attract the tourism. It is because these places are protected area. So, the tourism will be happy to see the nature of environment. In this forest also occur interaction human and plants because human want to get a foods. There are many foods can human get like bamboo shoot.
Interactions between animal and plants are about foods and also plants as a place to get a protection. We look in Mahua Crocker Range Forest, animals get many benefit because there many plants. So that, many foods can provide by plants like fig trees and bananas.
For the interactions between plants and plants, we can look there are several species like epiphytes life on others plants. This epiphytes species is like fern and also orchid. Epiphytes are not a parasite because they can make their on food. So, this epiphytes are just living on other plants for get the support.
7.0 IMPORTANT TO CONSERVE FOREST
The tropical rainforest have a many benefit to conserve because this forest can manipulate a lot of oxygen for the living thing like human, animal and also the forest can stabilized their temperature by evaporation.
Tropical rainforest there are very important because to get the soil protection. Soil is an integral part of the biosphere. It consists of organic and organic matter in the form of solids, liquid and gases, but an addition to these inert materials the soil provides of habitat for many organisms which are essential for the maintenance of the overlying plant communities. Soil is the principal source of the nutrients and water for most terrestrial plants, they are in turn provide bulk of the organic litter necessary for the maintenance of the living community. Removal of forest cover will tremendously affect this balance, which will further cause water pollution, soil erosion, dyeing out of microorganisms inhabiting in it. Compare the quality of water following in Kinabalu Park rivers with the rivers nearly the city.
Besides that, Tropical Rainforest there is also important as a watershed. In this forest are called watershed. It is because watershed acts as a reservoir of freshwater for need in our daily lives. Many communities living around Kinabalu Park are highly dependent on water being supplied by it, for example is Kundasang, Ranau.
Tropical rainforest also get to see as oxygen factor and carbon sequestration mechanism. It is because photosynthesis is the main function of plant, producing oxygen that is vital for the existence of human and animals. Carbon dioxide in the atmosphere is being absorbed by plants thru the process photosynthesis and this carbon dioxide is converted and stored by plant in the form of starch. Basically, the entire plant is composed of carbon. In the event that these trees are cut down, much carbon will be released back into the atmosphere. It has been made clear that accumulation of carbon in the atmosphere has a direct impact on the global climate, resulting to global warming, plus the fact that there are no more factories that will produce the air we breathe.
After that, aesthetic value also important in explanation about forest. It is because there is no argument that a green environment is pleasing to the eye. And whatever our belief is, it is true that no monetary value can equal to the satisfaction and extraordinary excitement of being closed to nature.
The trip to Mahua Crocker Range Park forest gave us a valuable experience. From the journey on we started until we reached to MCR forest, we spend more than 4 hours on the bus. During our journey to our destination, we saw and experienced many different things, such as the changes from the city to rural areas, the different kind of species of flora and fauna, and the distinct of climate between the city and forest. As an overnight camp, we are expected to do few of activities like night trekking, bird watching and forest trekking. These activities have helped us to understand the interaction between flora and flora in the jungle, and importance roles of it.
The forest is very important biodiversity to environment and human being. It provide not only habitat for living organism but also provide food, clean water, fresh air, and etc. Values of the forest are uncountable and the vanishing of it can cause many serious problems to the whole living organism. To prevent the vanishing of forest, some action should be taken to ensure the ecology will not be damage. One of the actions can be view is conservation. Conservation of the Mahua forest done through the protected of the law, anyone who try to intrude or damage the forest will be fined and penalized. Therefore, the whole ideas being stated above shows that MCR forest that we studied need the continuity of conservation biology as its function is really important for the future generation.
Our recommendations for Mahua-Crocker Range Park to more people visits there and feel the fresh environment. Firstly, we hope the road to Mahua change from grabbles to road with a good condition like cement and tars it to give a comfortable to visitors who want go to mahua.
Secondly, we recommend more signboard to Mahua build at Kota Kinabalu, near the road before Tambunan to give people more direction which road go to mahua and introduce Mahua Waterfall to them because many people did not know Mahua Waterfall exist and where is the location. In our observation only two signboard along our journey to Mahua-Crocker Range.
Thirdly, we suggest Sabah Park or Mahua-Crocker Range Park build an accommodation like Chalet, Rest Home and place for camping. Sometimes have people want stay at Mahua or camping there so with this accommodation people can sleep or rest at the chalet or in camp. Like us student doing a fieldwork at Mahua we can sleep at camp but if its rain we can sleep at Chalet to give a comfortable to visitors.
Fourthly, we need a “surau” to build at Mahua because to convenience to Muslim people doing their pray. If this facilities do not have its hard to people do their pray we hope this suggestion can be realize in Mahua.
Fifthly and lastly, we recommend more lamp build at Mahua at the road to Mahua forest and waterfall. Sometimes student or visitors walk at night to the forest do not have a lamp it’s to dangerous and build more walking road to the forest to convenience the people to go there.
We hope all this recommendation will be accomplish at Mahua-Crocker Range Park and Mahua Waterfall in the future to attract more people visit there. We so happy do our fieldwork at Mahua we never this experiences and knowledge that we gain in the trip.
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