The Sarawak Biodiversity Centre (SBC) and the Malaysian Nature Society Kuching Branch (MNSKB) will jointly organise a programme on Dragonfly watching over the weekend of 27 and 28 August.
A public awareness talk, entitled “Dragonfly and Damselfly Watching: A New Way to Enjoy Nature in Sarawak” by Dr Ronald Orenstein will take place on 27 August 2016, a Saturday, at 3.00pm at Telang Usan Hotel in Kuching.
This will be followed by a dragonfly watching session the next morning, Sunday, 28 August 2016 at 9.00am at the Sama Jaya Nature Reserve. The dragonfly watching session at the nature reserve will be coordinated by MNSKB.
Both sessions are free for members of public and nature enthusiasts to attend, and are part of SBC’s and MNSKB’s outreach to create awareness and appreciation towards biodiversity in Sarawak.
According to Dr Orenstein, birders around the world are now taking up dragonfly-watching – or oding, after the Odonata, the group of insects to which dragonflies and damselflies – the odes -belong.
Odes have been called the “birder’s insect” – there are relatively few species to learn, they are often easy to see and identify, and are ideal subjects for the nature photographer.
Dr Orenstein, an avid birder himself, has become passionate about dragonflies, and he is eager to share his enthusiasm.
During the talk on 27 August, he will introduce the audience to dragonflies and damselflies, their lives, provide tips on how to identify them, and give a brief insight into the species that one can find in favourite places in and around Kuching.
Borneo is home to a wide range of odes, many found nowhere else. There is still a lot to learn about Sarawak’s dragonflies and damselflies – new species are being discovered and described, even close to Kuching.
Dr Orenstein is an ornithologist and wildlife conservationist with degrees in both zoology and law.
He is the author of ten books on science and nature, covering everything from elephants to butterflies.
As a member of the board of the Species Survival Network, a coalition of over eighty environmental and animal welfare groups worldwide, he works to protect wildlife in trade through the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES).
For the past ten years he has been a part-time resident of Sarawak and a member of MNSKB where he has assisted the Ministry of Tourism in training sessions for birding guides.
Those interested in registering for the talk on 27 August 2016 can register with the Sarawak Biodiversity Centre by sending an email with names and contact details to firstname.lastname@example.org.
They can also obtain more information by calling the Centre at 082-610610 to speak to Mr Ha-Mim Marzuki or Ms Nurulliza Murtada.
Attendees for the talk are also encouraged to take up the dragonfly watching session coordinated by MNSKB on Sunday, 28 August. This can be indicated when registering for public talk.