Navigation Links
First-ever book on Mekong rattan species aims to promote sustainable practices

In a major advance for the sustainable use of a critical natural resource, The New York Botanical Garden and the World Wildlife Fund (WWF) today released the most comprehensive catalogue of the rattan species found in three Southeast Asian countries, including data that makes it possible to determine how much rattan can be harvested without depleting natural stocks of these versatile, economically important plants.

Systematics, Ecology and Management of Rattans in Cambodia, Laos, and VietnamThe Biological Bases of Sustainable Use includes information on the 65 known rattan species that grow in the three countries, including two species found only in Cambodia that are new to science. The book is the result of eight years of research by Botanical Garden scientists and WWF experts.

"This book represents the most comprehensive analysis of rattans ever compiled anywhere in the world," said co-author Dr. Charles M. Peters, Kate E. Tode Curator of Botany at the Botanical Garden and a leading authority on the management of tropical forests. "It is unique in that this single volume addresses the ecological, taxonomic, and silvicultural aspects of a valuable forest resource. Most importantly, we want people to understand that you can't sustainably harvest more than the annual growth of rattan from a forest in one year."

Joining Dr. Peters as co-author is Andrew J. Henderson, Ph.D., Abess Curator of Palms at the Garden and a leading authority on the systematics, taxonomy and biology of palms, which include rattans. As part of his field research on this project, he discovered and named the two Cambodian rattan species new to science, Calamus mellitus (common name in Khmer: Pdao Toek Khmom) and Calamus kampucheaensis (common name in Khmer: Pdao Bonla Dong Penh).

Rattan is one of the most important non-timber forest products in the Greater Mekong region. Various species support local livelihoods as sources of food, material for shelter, and products with export value such as rattan furniture. However, forest conversion and unsustainable harvesting are leading to serious declines in rattan stocks, threatening the potential growth and sustainability of the region's rattan industry.

The book, which is available in English, Khmer, Vietnamese and Lao language versions, aims to help both naturalists and those in the rattan industry in identifying rattan species, while providing guidance in maximizing yields and achieving sustainable production of rattan resources. It also details lessons learned in numerous aspects of the rattan industry, from sustainable management planning to processing and export policies.

"We are delighted to launch this book, which clearly demonstrates that sustainable rattan management, production and trade is the only way to ensure the Mekong rattan industry will continue and thrive into the future," said Chhith Sam Ath, WWF-Cambodia's Country Director. "We urge Greater Mekong governments to use this resource as they urgently develop and implement rattan management plans."

To ensure rattan harvesting and processing do not endanger rattan and forest resources but instead offer new sources of long-term income for rural people, WWF has embarked on an ambitious project with communities and companies in Cambodia, Laos, and Vietnam. The end goal is to help improve management of rattan in the Greater Mekong region.

Chhith noted that local communities in Siem Reap and the Tonle Sap region are using a rattan species found only in Cambodia (Calamus salicifolius, known in Khmer as Lpeak) to produce high-quality baskets and handicrafts that are exported to Thailand and other international markets. "This unique species is only found in Cambodia and is therefore critical to our country's biodiversity and the future of our rattan industry," Chhith said.

The book is the result of a collaboration between The New York Botanical Garden and WWF-Greater Mekong, together with relevant government and development partners. In Laos, this collaboration has resulted in the world's first rattan products to be certified as sustainably harvested by the Forest Stewardship Council (FSC). It has also facilitated the establishment of the Rattan Association of Cambodia and the Vietnam Rattan Programmeimportant mechanisms for ensuring that producers also secure benefits from the growing demand for sustainable rattan products.

"With support from WWF, I am engaged in rattan forest management, harvesting and selling FSC-certified rattan at a high price," said Jai Singsombath, head of the weaving group in Thaveng Village in Bolikhamxay province, Laos. "More importantly, I am, together with other villagers, engaged in processing and weaving to improve our lives, with an average income of $150 per month during the production period."


Contact: Stevenson Swanson
The New York Botanical Garden

Related biology news :

1. First-ever survey of Do-It-Yourself Biology community challenges myths
2. First-ever therapeutic offers hope for improving blood transfusions
3. First-ever 3-D stress map of developing embryonic heart sheds light on why defects form
4. Professor publishes on first-ever imaging of cells growing on spherical surfaces
5. China poised to accept first-ever non-animal test method for cosmetics
6. First-ever release of endangered burying beetles in Missouri
7. Scientists complete first-ever emperor penguin count from space
8. A new species of Oak hidden away in the greenery of Ton Pariwat Wildlife Sanctuary
9. Maps show expected redistribution of global species due to climate change
10. New plant species a microcosm of biodiversity
11. Researchers discover rare new species of deep-diving whale
Post Your Comments:
Related Image:
First-ever book on Mekong rattan species aims to promote sustainable practices
(Date:4/11/2017)... 2017 Research and Markets has announced the ... to their offering. ... eye tracking market to grow at a CAGR of 30.37% during ... Market 2017-2021, has been prepared based on an in-depth market analysis ... and its growth prospects over the coming years. The report also ...
(Date:4/5/2017)... Allen Institute for Cell Science today announces the launch ... dynamic digital window into the human cell. The website ... deep learning to create predictive models of cell organization, ... suite of powerful tools. The Allen Cell Explorer will ... resources created and shared by the Allen Institute for ...
(Date:4/3/2017)...  Data captured by IsoCode, IsoPlexis Corporation,s ... statistically significant association between the potency of ... objective response of cancer patients post-treatment. The ... cancer patients will respond to CAR-T cell ... to improve both pre-infusion potency testing and cell ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:10/12/2017)... ... 12, 2017 , ... BioMedGPS announces expanded coverage of SmartTRAK ... module, US Hemostats & Sealants. , SmartTRAK’s US Market for Hemostats and Sealants ... sealants and biologic sealants used in surgical applications. BioMedGPS estimates the market will ...
(Date:10/11/2017)... ... ... Personal eye wash is a basic first aid supply for any work environment, but most ... you rinse first if a dangerous substance enters both eyes? It’s one less decision, and ... unique dual eye piece. , “Whether its dirt and debris, or an acid or alkali, ...
(Date:10/11/2017)... ... October 11, 2017 , ... Disappearing forests and increased emissions ... over 5.5 million people each year. Especially those living in larger cities are affected ... based in one of the most pollution-affected countries globally - decided to take action. ...
(Date:10/10/2017)... ... October 10, 2017 , ... For the second ... a US2020 STEM Mentoring Award. Representatives of the FirstHand program travelled to Washington, ... from US2020. , US2020’s mission is to change the trajectory of STEM education ...
Breaking Biology Technology: