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Entries in Htamanthi Wildlife Sanctuary (8)


Going On Patrol

Early morning servicing of the motors at the Htamanthi Wildlife Sanctuary Forward Station (see How Tall Is That Teak Tree? and Sandstorm). Once the motors are working well, they are attached to long boats (see below) and filled with a team of rangers who will navigate into the backwaters of the Htamanthi Wildlife Sanctuary and spend two weeks walking through the forest looking for poachers or loggers or gold miners. They will be replaced by a similar team who works a different sector of the protected area. Two weeks hiking, two weeks off. These are some gnarly young men. 


Sorting Specimens

Doug Daly (NYBG), Soe Myint Aye (University of Mandalay), Kyaw Zin Aung (Forest Department), and Kate Armstrong (NYBG) sort the (recently-dried) herbarium specimens that they collected in the Htamanthi Wildlife Sanctuary. The Upper Chindwin river flows by in the background and there is a cool afternoon breeze. [NOTE: This is about as great a place to sort herbarium specimens as I can imagine]. 


Great Truck

Posted without comment. Another classic truck (see That Truck) from northern Myanmar. This beautiful specimen parked in front of the Htamanthi WS Forward Station in Htamanthi, Sagaing Region.


Back To Nam Sa Bi

Got my visa–or e-visa, I should say–and all systems are go for my trip back to the Upper Chindwin next Tuesday. Laying out a Village Management Area (VMA) in the buffer zone of the Htamanthi Wildlife Sanctuary, clearing transect lines, setting stakes, sloshing around in streams, correcting for slope, and trying not to fall down. Should be great fun and I am very much looking forward to getting back to work with my friends from Nam Sa Bi (see Nam Sa Bi Field Crew).  


How Tall Is That Teak Tree?

This is all happening at the Htamanthi Wildlife Sanctuary Forward Station in Homalin (see Sandstorm). The rangers had just put a growth band around one of the teak trees in the compound, i.e. the tree with the big leaves–and the metal dendrometer band–in the center of the image, and now they were measuring back 20 m to estimate its height with a clinometer.

So much that I like about this photo. The young ranger squatting next to the tree (his job was to hold the end of the tape), the white meter tape snakeing out from the tree, the gaggle of rangers clustered together to collaborate on the measurement of tree height (there was only one clinometer), and U Maung Win, warden of the Htamanthi Wildlife Sanctuary, (in white plaid shirt and longyi) peeking out around the bole of the tree.  

My thoughts have started to turn, once again, to Myanmar. There is a trip back to Sagaing Region region planned for October 14, but, as of yet, no permits, no visas, and no plane tickets. I will keep you posted.



So, we we had just started the afternoon session of our training workshop at the Htamanthi Wildlife Sanctuary forward station (see Foresters Measure Tree Height) and were going over the methodology for correcting the slope of the transect. And then I looked across the Chindwin River and noticed that the wind was starting to pick up and that a sandstorm was developing. And then the wind on our side of the river really started blowing, as well.

And sand and dust were blowing everywhere. And everybody just kept trying to measure the slope and ignore the weather event (i.e. the start of the monsoon) that we were engulfed in.

But then the wind really started blowing, and the sand got so thick you couldn't see. And then sheets of corrugated aluminum started blowing off the roofs and smashing into things. And people started running to take shelter and screaming. At this point, we all thought it best to put the training workshop on hold until things calmed down a bit.    


Pressing Plants at the Basecamp

The WCS team built a large bamboo table at the Nam Sa Bi basecamp (see Nam Sa Bi Field Crew). We ate our meals there, had morning tea and strategy meetings there, and also spread out newspapers, carboards, and fieldbooks and  pressed plants there. From left to right: Aung San Oo (Man Sa Bi), Kyaw Zin Aung (Htamanthi Wildlife Sanctuary), Myint Thein (Htamanthi Wildlife Sanctuary), Saw Htun (WCS), Kate Armstrong (NYBG), and Yinhtan Syan Bay (WCS). [NOTE: That's my walking stick leaning on the table to the left of Kate].


Foresters Measure Tree Height

Just what it says. Kate Armstrong and I gave a day-long training workshop at the Htamanthi Wildlife Sanctuary after we finished the fieldwork. Basic concepts, inventory, growth measurement, and botanical collecting methodologies, and the results from the work we just finished. Image above shows participants (enthusiastically) using a clinometer to measure the commercial height of a teak tree (Tectona grandis L.f.) planted on the grounds. They then fitted a growth band around the tree. Love their hats.