THE OLDEST rain forest on earth
Executive summary by darmansjah
BORNEO The tropical rain forest dos not get any rainier than on the island of Borneo. Covering hundreds of thousands of square miles across the borders of Brunei, Indonesia, and Malaysia, Borneo’s rain forest is pounded by up to 160 inches (406 cm) of monsoon per year. The montane and lowland forests protect a dizzying array of plants and animals, including orangutans, pygmy elephants, and the Sumatran rhinoceros. A single dipterocarp tree can host 1,000 kinds of insects. And the count has just begun. Since 2007, more than 120 new species have been found, among them the world’s longest insect (a stick insect 1.6 feet, or 0.5 m, long) and a colourful ‘ninja slug’ that shoots hormonal darts into its mate.
HONK IF YOU LOVE HORNBILLS More than 380 birds species make their homes in Borneo’s rich rain forests. One of the most spectacular is the rhinoceros hornbill, whose colourful casque, a hollow keratin structure on its bill, amplifies its harsh honking call.
TAKING THE LEAP An infant holds tight as a proboscis monkey leaps toward a hanging vine. The endangered monkeys are one of 13 primate species found on Borneo, ranging from orangutans to slow lorises.