By Norafandi Muhamad Zazli, Industrial Trainee Intern UKM
Pix Abdul Razak Hussin
KUALA SELANGOR, 4 May 2012 – The National University of Malaysia (UKM) has been carrying out various programmes to ensure fireflies which have made the area around the river here their breeding ground is preserved and their number multiplied.
One of the projects being carried out is the planting of the berembang tree in cooperation with the Tenaga Nasional Berhad Research (TNBR).
The UKM community programme to plant the berembang tree, known to be the firefly habitat where they egg and spawn is crucial to ensure the survival and propagation of the insect.
The programme ‘the planting of the berembang tree with the community to conserve firefly’ was lunched here last Sunday by Prof Dr Mohamad Deraman of the Faculty of Science and Technology on behalf of the UKM Vice Chancellor.
He hoped the local community will give their fullest cooperation in monitoring the river and ensuring the surrounding environment is preserved to ensure the fireflies in the area are protected, preserved and their population increased.
Various other activities were also being carried out as part of the project including the setting up of the Firefly Squad to teach villagers how to make seedlings of the berembang tree and grow them.
Presence of the berembang tree is crucial as it is the natural habitat of the fireflies were they egg and spawn.
Another group, the ‘Love Your River Squad’ made up of youths from Seri Asahan is to monitor the rehabilitation of the river to ensure that the berembang trees planted will grow well.
TNB Vice President for Corporate Affairs, Adelina Iskandar hoped the project will make the people in the area understand and realise the need to conserve the environment.
Such projects will also help improve the well being of the locals and those living around the Firefly Tourism Centre and especially the boatmen, she said.
The Hulu Selangor District Officer, Hajah Noraini bt Roslan; the Orang Besar Daerah Kuala Selangor, Dato’ Mohammad Yaakob bin Hj. Ismail; Director of the Selangor Water Board, (Lembaga Air Selangor), Haji Md Khairi bin Selamat and the Drainage and Irrigation District Engineer, Safii bin Ramli were among those attending the launching of the planting of the berembang tree.