By: Noor Eszereen Juferi
Photo by: Marina Ismail
RAWANG, 26 August – Tengku Permaisuri Selangor, Tengku Permaisuri Norashikin inaugurated the Royal Biodiversity Scientific Expedition of the Fraser’s Hill Selangor State Park in Hulu Selangor District, Selangor.
Her Royal Highness also launched three books published by Universiti Putra Malaysia (UPM) titled, ‘Enchanted Orchids of Fraser’s Hill’ by Prof. Dr. Rusea Go (UPM), Dr. Farah Alia Nordin (USM) and Dato’ Dr. Mohd Puat Dahalan (JPNS); ‘Wonders of Malaysian Orchids: Unveiling Vanilla Norashikiniana’ by Prof. Dr. Rusea Go (UPM) and Dr. Mohd. Akmal Raffi (UMT); ‘Reflections 25 Years of the Commonwealth Forest Eco Park’ a book from Commonwealth Forest Eco Park (TER) by Ms. Sharifah Norizan Syed Isa.
Representative of the Selangor Chief Minister, Assemblyman Mr. Hee Loy Sian presented his speech at the event. Also present were UPM Vice Chancellor, Prof. Datin Paduka Dato’ Dr. Aini Ideris; Director of the Selangor State Forestry Department, Dato’ Dr. Haji Mohd Puat Dahalan; Deputy Director of Forestry Department Peninsular Malaysia, Dato’ Mohd Ridza Awang and Dato’ Orang Kaya Maha Bijaya Gombak, Tan Sri Dato’ Paduka Raja Dato’ Hj. Wan Mahmood Pa’wan Teh.
The Royal Expedition Programme was held for the first time in the State of Selangor with the aim of collecting, documenting and conducting scientific studies on the diversity of orchids, ornamental plants and medicinal plants that are available in Fraser’s Hill and Hulu Selangor.
The programme was attended by 40 researchers from all over Malaysia led by Prof. Rusea Go who specialises in the field of orchid research. The five-day programme began on 26 August and will end on 30 August 2019 in the area of Fraser’s Hill Selangor State Park.
The data obtained will assist in university research, teaching, learning, consultation as well as enhancing collaborations between UPM and the community and also the Department of Forestry in the conservation of natural resources in the forest area.
The vanilla norashikiniana orchid plant was planted at the Chenta Anggerik, Commonwealth Forest Eco Park and the Tengku Permaisuri Norashikin Wild Orchid Conservatory Park in Fraser’s Hill.
The park is a conservation centre for wild orchids from Malaysia’s mountainous areas as well as an orchid research development area which was established with the collaboration of UPM experts and researchers from across Malaysia and the world.
Earlier, Tengku Permaisuri Norashikin gave her consent to naming the wild orchid as ‘Vanilla Norashikiniana Orchid’ on 3 November 2017 in Bukit Ekspo, UPM.
The new orchid species was first found without any flowers in 2013 at a Forest Reserve in Peninsular Malaysia during a botanical expedition by a group of UPM botanical scientists and the Selangor State Forestry Department (JPNS).
The vanilla norashikiniana orchid plant was later planted at a UPM nursery and began to flower in November 2014. Researchers took almost three years to verify the discovery of this new species.
Meanwhile, the Commonwealth Forest Eco Park (TER) was founded in conjunction with the Commonwealth Forest Conference held in 1993 and has a unique historical value as it symbolises the country’s commitment and ability to conserve forests. - UPM
Date of Input: 29/08/2019 | Updated: 06/09/2019 | hairul_nizam
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