Sunday, 30 September 2012

Weevils fighting

Unprotected wildlife habitats in Singapore can be recklessly destroyed anytime. A recent example is the clearing of the forest outside Braddell View estate.

There is a forest near where I live. In it I have recorded 47 species of dragonflies. This is 36% of the 131 species ever recorded in Singapore. Among those 47 species are some very rare species, including Heliaeschna uninervulata, which was a new addition to the Singapore odonata list when I first discovered in this forest in 2008.

In the forest, it is not difficult to find fallen trees. Usually these dead trees attract many different kinds of creatures such as beetles, bugs, flies and wasps. I have been recording the behaviour of these creatures on video for a year. The footage below shows two male weevils fighting for a female. The weevil is common in the forest and it belongs to the family Curculionidae. Its mouthparts are formed into a long snout with an antenna on each side of the snout, which is often used to bore wood. The weevil's snout and big eyes give it a hilarious look.

Please watch the video at 480p.

I have been visiting the forest regularly in the past 9 years. It is apparent that the biodiversity there is on the decline in these two years. It is now more difficult to see the rare species. This is probably due to the more frequent disturbance from humans.

Since this forest is unprotected, it may face the same fate as Braddell Road Forest.

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