25 March 2016 (Friday) – Forest Research Institute Malaysia (FRIM) organised a talk yesterday by a taxonomist from Singapore Botanic Gardens (SBG), Dr Daniel Thomas, at the Durio Meeting Room in FRIM, Kepong.
A total of 22 researchers from the forest biodiversity and forestry biotechnology divisions attended the talk on ‘Evolution of endemism in a tropical biodiversity hotspot: Mount Kinabalu, Sabah, Malaysia’.
In his presentation, Thomas shared findings of an interesting research conducted by a team of interdisciplinary scientists on the evolution of various organisms including moss, fern, flowering plants, fungus and animal in Mount Kinabalu. The findings are important for the conservation of endemic species in the montane ecosystem.
Thomas completed his PhD at the Royal Botanic Garden Edinburgh, United Kingdom in 2010; and took up research and teaching positions at the University of Hong Kong and the Naturalis Biodiversity Center in the Netherlands.
In 2014, he joined SBG to continue his research on the systematics and biogeography of Southeast Asian tropical plant lineages including begonias, Annonaceae and Lauraceae. His work integrates traditional herbarium studies and field work as well as lab-based molecular approaches.
Also present at the talk were FRIM Flora Biodiversity Programme Head Dr Richard Chung, FRIM Fellow Dr Saw Leng Guan and the FRIM Flora of Peninsular Malaysia Project Consultant, Dr Ruth Kiew.