| Hamidah Ismail |
THE 1stopbrunei Wildlife Club recently embarked on a trip to the deep forests of Brunei for a recreational retreat as well as to conduct surveys. The outing started at sunrise off the coast of the water village which was an ideal place for photography.
Several species of sun birds and pitcher plants were spotted in different locations around the area during this trip. According to a pitcher plant expert, Dr Ulrike Bauer, the pitcher plant found is called Nepenthes Rafflesiana. Although, it can be commonly found in Brunei and quite widespread around the Southeast Asian region, it is classified as ‘endangered due to habitat destruction’ by The Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES).
Due to the lack of biodiversity awareness of this species, most of the habitat of Nepenthes Rafflesiana has been lost to development. Brunei is no exception to this. One of its habitat in Brunei, which is along the coastal highway between the road leading to Kampong Bukit Beruang in the east and across the road to the Telisai Satellite Station in the west or most popularly known by the locals as the ‘Pasir Putih’ area, has already been destroyed to make way for new roads.
Nepenthes species is popular among researchers and known for its beautiful, large and colourful pitchers as well as its strong sweet scent, which can be smelt from a distance, especially at night.
Last year, the club, which is a non-profit organisation, had conducted a total of 24 educational talks at various schools around the country, rescued 31 endangered animals and conducted three river clean ups. This was made possible by their sponsors and supporters. The club is welcoming contributions from any public and private corporations to help them carry out more conservation activities this year.
The 1stopbrunei Wildlife Club can be reached on their Facebook page at ‘1stopbrunei Wildlife’.