Tuesday, May 3, 2016

Checking out the rattan canes

Rattan harvested and coiled up.
Provinsi Rattan, Zone I

A small stream in the Rattan territory
 The clear water in the stream that flows through the Provinsi Rattan makes me feel consoled.  I often check the 'rattan territory' area for any disturbances.  Today, I'm pleased to see the area where many species of rattan thrive is largely intact.  I could hear different bird calls and most interesting was to know the presence of the Rufous-backed Kingfisher which I saw speeding through the tree trunks and branches but too fast for me to photograph.  Rattans are climbing palms which have many economic, cultural and entertainment uses among the Melanaus of Bintulu.  It is for this reason that the Melanaus have over generations maintain the jungle in their possession undisturbed as a source of rattan material and other plants and jungle products having  medicinal value.  In comparison, the Ibans of Sarawak are more destructive of the forest because of their practice of completely burning the forest (slash and burn method)  for the purpose of planting hill padi. Rattans need tall trees around them by which they grow upwards with the aid of thorns or whip-like thorn-bearing leaf-tips that are a constant menace if you are to walk through the rattan territory. Some rattan fruits are edible and can be bought at the Bintulu 'tamu' or jungle produce market.
Licuala palm species found in the Rattan area

A jungle  fungi species on the forest floor at the rattan area.

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