Sunday, August 29, 2010

C. sp. 'Pahang 5', perfect loop!

As I stated, Pahang is really a huge state in Malay Peninsula. We found this other stream in a forest in Pahang with cryptocorynes growing on the sandy bed of the stream.
There was a portion of the stream with many roots from adjacent trees growing out of the shallow water. There were many cryptocorynes growing among the roots.
The shape of the cryptocoryne leaves were wide ovate with cordate base. The upper side of the leaves was green in colour while the under side was slightly reddish.
There was a few leaves which was so round that my friend termed the specimens as C. sp. 'perfect loop'! These specimens reminded me of the C. cordata we found at Rompin which was in Pahang state too (but not close to this new location at all) which had rather round leaves too. Could these be C. cordata too?
This is a video to share with you.

C. sp. 'Pahang 4'

I woke up early during one of the recent weekend and went on a short field trip to Pahang in Malay Peninsula with my explorer friend.
As it was currently the Puasa (fasting) month, we were lucky to be able to find an Indian shop selling prata for breakfast.
We passed by the cemetery of Cryptocoryne sp. 'Kotat Tinggi' and stopped over for a minute of silence. The matured oil palm plantation had already been chopped down for another cycle of growth, probably using heavy machinery such as bulldozers and excavators. The oil palm plantation owner had finally successfully devised a method to prevent future unauthorised collection of Cryptocoryne sp. 'Kotat Tinggi' by plant collectors, and that was by destroying the habitat. Way to go for conservation!
We also bashed into a jungle in Pahang and managed to find a forest with many puddles of water full of Betta tussyae.
No cryptocoryne luck for day one. However, day 2 was different. We explored a forest stream and found cryptocoryne residing therein. A water snake was spotted too and we managed to chase the snake away before entering the stream.
Cryptocorynes were found growing emersed along the sandy elevated banks of the stream.
The leaves were generally green on both the upper and under sides.
We also found a few specimens with markings on the leaves, the centre vein was white in colour and the underside was slightly reddish.
As mentioned, the base was sandy and the pH was not low, about 6.0 to 6.5
This is a video to share with you.
At one end of the stream, we found a large patch of submersed cryptocorynes. These submersed specimens had larger leaves.
Pahang is really a huge state in Malay Peninsula with many cryptocorynes habitats waiting to be found. As usual, until I am able to locate the flower of these specimens, I will term them as C. sp. 'Pahang 4' first. What do you guess they could be, C. cordata / C. nurii / C. griffithii / C. xpurpurea / C. sp. new etc?

Friday, August 20, 2010

C. sp. Belitung 5 'West Belitung'

The 3rd day in Belitung was quite a leisure day as we only visited 1 other cryptocoryne habitat, which was the one which we passed by during our 1st night. As usual, breakfast was the same Javanese style coffee and jam toast, simple but delicious.
Along the way we caught a few bettas, of which one of them could be a new sub-species / species under the foerschi group.
The cryptocoryne which we found were fully submersed in water. The base of the river was sandy with pH of about 6.0. Again, I am not able to confirm the species as no flowers were found.
It started to rain heavily again during noon time. I took a photograph of a lone boat rocking in the choppy sea beside the restaurant where we had lunch.
After lunch, we went back to the hotel to bathe and then to the small airport on Belitung to catch the flight back to Jakarta to connect back to Singapore. By the time we reached home, it was past midnight already.
This wrapped up our adventure in Belitung. 5 cryptocoryne habitats were located but sadly, no flowers were found at the various habitats to allow us to confirm the species. Lets hope the few specimens which I collected back would survive and flower.