Monday, August 30, 2010

Cornwall students complete Kinabatangan River field course

KINABATANGAN: Cornwall College students have just completed a two-week field course working in the rain forest around the Kinabatangan River in Sabah.

Their trip to the Danau Girang Field Centre, which is run jointly by the Sabah Wildlife Department and Cardiff University, is hoped to be the first of many.

Dr Andrew Smart, who led the trip said: “The work we carried out focused mainly on the river and freshwater system in the forest which compliments work by Cardiff University. This year we have had a small group who worked hard establishing the methods we will use in the future for long term monitoring of changes in the freshwater systems as the forest becomes more isolated.”

Students worked on profiling the river, which is over 20m deep in places, identifying frogs in the forest pools, catching and identifying fish species and cataloguing the birds along the river and their territories.

“By doing this we can monitor the health of the river which is vital for the forest and for the local people,” said Dr Hazel Selley who was also on the trip.

The students were lucky enough to see orangutans, saltwater crocodiles and the Bornean elephant.

“We were so lucky to see the elephant three times,” said Amy Solman, a student on a Wildlife and Media Foundation Degree.

“I filmed the trip for my second year project and have hours of footage of wildlife and students working on the project,” she added.

One of the highlights of the trip was a day travelling down river to the mangroves at the river mouth and stopping to share a meal with a local fisherman and his family.

Continue reading at: Cornwall students complete Kinabatangan River field course

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