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05 Jun 2018 - POSSIBLY NEW SUB-SPECIES DISCOVERED


KUCHING: Dr. Ahmad Ampeng, the Sarawak Forest Department researcher and his team recently discovered an unidentified bird species.  From the taxonomy description made, the species is ‘possibly’ a new sub-species of pheasant from the family Phasianidae of the genus Lophura.

Acting Director of Forest, Tuan Hamden Mohammed said, three Lophura species are known to inhabit the Bornean Forest;- Lophura ignita ignita, Lophura ignita nobilis and Lophura bulweri.  The Lophura bulweri also known as Bulwer’s wattled pheasant, wattled pheasant or white tailed wattled pheasant are endemic to Borneo.  The most significance difference between the two bornean Lophura species was the crest.  The crest is absence in the Lophura bulweri but appears in both male and female of the Lophura ignita ignita and Lophura ignita nobilis.   

The absence of crest and plumage comparisons shown that the species strictly not from the Lophura ignita species but more close to the bulwer species however; their physical characteristic, plumage coloration and particularly the tail is strictly differ from that species Lophura bulwer.  With this, it was concluded that the species might be the sub-species of Lophura bulweri.        

Tuan Hamden said, at the moment, the identification was only made base on their physical characteristic/taxonomy.  No DNA sample been taken because during the survey carry out no complete equipment brought together. DNA sample collection could need a proper equipment or otherwise the species may died.  This is the first time the species recorded, and we don’t have any idea of their population.  We are in the effort of collecting a proper DNA sample to confirm the status of the species.

Tuan Hamden also explains that this findings indicate that the forests in Sarawak still hold the mystery of species diversity and thus; should be intensively explored by the Department's researchers. The finding also indicate that the Sarawak Forest Department has fully undertaken the responsibility of their forest management.  He added that the species can be a potential tourism product especially for the birds watchers or researches in the avian field.

Dr. Ahmad Ampeng, penyelidik Jabatan Hutan Sarawak dan pasukannya baru-baru ini menemui spesies burung yang tidak dikenali. Dari takrif taksonomi yang dibuat, spesies ini 'mungkin' sub-spesies baru dari pheasant dari keluarga Phasianidae dari genus Lophura.

Pemangku Pengarah Hutan, Tuan Hamden Mohammed berkata, tiga spesies Lophura diketahui mendiami Hutan Borneo; - Lophura ignita ignita, Lophura ignita nobilis dan Lophura bulweri. The bulweri Lophura yang juga dikenali sebagai Pheasant yang berbulu bulwer, pheasant yang berbulu atau ekor putih berbulu ekor putih adalah endemik kepada Borneo. Perbezaan paling penting antara kedua spesies Lophura adalah puncak. Puncak adalah ketiadaan dalam bulweri Lophura tetapi muncul pada kedua lelaki dan wanita lophura ignita ignita dan Lophura ignita nobilis.

Ketiadaan perbandingan puncak dan bulu menunjukkan bahawa spesies itu tidak ketat daripada spesies Lita lophura tetapi lebih dekat dengan spesies bulwer namun; ciri fizikal mereka, pewarna bulu dan terutamanya ekor adalah sangat berbeza daripada spesies Lophura bulwer itu. Dengan ini, disimpulkan bahawa spesies ini mungkin sub-spesies Lophura bulweri.

Tuan Hamden berkata, pada masa ini, identifikasi hanya dibuat berasaskan ciri fizikal / taksonomi mereka. Tiada sampel DNA diambil kerana semasa tinjauan dijalankan tiada peralatan lengkap dibawa bersama. Pengumpulan sampel DNA memerlukan peralatan yang sesuai atau sebaliknya spesies boleh mati. Ini adalah kali pertama spesies itu direkodkan, dan kami tidak mempunyai idea tentang populasi mereka. Kami sedang berusaha mengumpul sampel DNA yang betul untuk mengesahkan status spesies.

Tuan Hamden juga menjelaskan bahawa penemuan ini menunjukkan bahawa hutan di Sarawak masih memegang misteri kepelbagaian spesies dan dengan itu; perlu diteliti secara mendalam oleh penyelidik Jabatan. Temuan ini juga menunjukkan bahawa Jabatan Hutan Sarawak telah melaksanakan tanggungjawab pengurusan hutan mereka secara keseluruhan. Beliau menambah bahawa spesies itu boleh menjadi produk pelancongan berpotensi terutama bagi pengawas burung atau penyelidikan di bidang burung

   Dr. Ahmad Ampeng with the team

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