Harvard Biodiversity of Borneo Course 2008


Project 1

Ant Composition on the Stems of More Toxic and Less Toxic Anacardiaceae

The people :

Ayu Savitri Nurinsiyah (Dept. of Biology, Padjadjaran University, Indonesia)

Eni Hidayati (Faculty of Forestry, Gadjah Mada University, Indonesia)

Nur Edna Hasreena Ahlun (Universiti Malaysia Sabah, Malaysia)

The Abstract

A study on ant composition on different genera from the Anacardiaceae family was conducted using the “bark spray method” in the CTFS Plot in Lambir Hills National Park from 8 to 10 July 2008. Gluta woodsiana and Mangifera foetida were chosen as the more toxic and less dermatologically toxic Anacardiaceae (for humans), respectively. Shorea laxa (Dipterocarpaceae) was selected as a control. We showed that there is a difference in ant composition between the different three tree species, and that there is higher species abundance and species diversity in Shorea laxa compared to the two members of Anacardiaceae family (Gluta woodsiana and Mangifera foetida).


The Unforgettable Moment:

In the CTFS plot, it was the first time I saw almost all trees have identity and well recorded. Thus, each individual in the plot is special! I like that fact. And for this project, we put our attention to Anacardiaceae. It was easy to spot them on paper, but it was different when we were on field. Many unpredictable things happened. One of the unpredictable things I remember most is when we were in the most challenging and dense block, Ayu said more or less like this “ hmm potato smell”. I suddenly remembered my friend (from west kalimantan) once said to me that when there is potato smell in a dense forest or mountain, we must not say a word about the smell. I asked her why? She said “because the smell is the sign of some other spirit’s presence!” Hmmm….. ^_^




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