Life Sciences graduating students – you are invited to a Farewell Dinner, Fri 08 Apr 2016: 6.00pm – register now!

Dear Life Sciences Students,

“If you are completing the undergraduate course and graduating at the end of this semester, an early congratulation to you for the achievement made!

The Department of Biological Sciences would like to invite you to a farewell evening event!

Farewell Life Sciences Graduating Students
Friday 8th April 2016: 6.00pm
Venue: To be confirmed

To register for the event, please go to

We hope to see you there!

Amy Choong
Department of Biological Sciences
National University of Singapore


Conference Report: The 2010 Meeting of the Association for Tropical Biology and Conservation

The Biodiversity Crew had a strong presence at the recent international meeting of the Association for Tropical Biology and Conservation (ATBC), the society which publishes the journal Biotropica.  Themed “Tropical biodiversity: surviving the food, energy and climate crisis”, the conference was held on July 19-23 in the Sanur Beach Hotel in Bali, Indonesia (the venue may explain why the many attendees from DBS!).

This was the first time that the annual meeting was held in Southeast Asia and it was a huge and successful event, with over 800 participants from 60 countries, and six parallel sessions of talks.  Before and after the course there were various workshops on scientific paper writing and experimental design and analysis, which some of the NUS crew attended. Even the Vice-President of Indonesia dropped in and gave a speech:

The Vice-President of Indonesia gives a speech

Here is the run-down of all the participants from DBS and their presentations:


Dr. Navjot Sodhi – “Conservation knowledge for all” symposium organizer

Dr. Richard Corlett  – Prospects for the Long-term Survival of Tropical Forest Biodiversity in Conversion Landscapes

Dr. Edward Webb – “Ecology and conservation of mangrove ecosystems along changing coastlines in Asia” symposium organizer

Dr. David Bickford – Impacts of Climate Change on the Amphibians and Reptiles of Southeast Asia


Dr. Ahimsa Campos-Arceiz – Asian Tapirs are no Elephants when it Comes to Seed Dispersal

Dr. Jennifer Sheridan – Shrinking Futures: Climate Change Effects on Body Size

Dr. Dan Friess – Large-scale Threats and Mangrove Dynamics in SE Asia

Dr. Mary Rose Posa – Biodiversity and Conservation of Tropical Peat Swamp Forests

Graduate Students

Lainie Qie – Dung Beetles on Small Islands are not Limited by Food Availability

Brett Scheffers – Global Biodiversity of Canopy Birds, Mammals, and Amphibians

Nanthinee Jeevanandam – The Phenology of Ficus grossularioides in Singapore

Alison Wee – Gene Flow of Avicennia alba and Bruguiera gymnorrhiza in a Fragmented Landscape

Daniel Ng – A pH/Temperature Synergism in Amphibians

Sheila Poo – Parental Care of Amphibians in Southeast Asia

Yan Chong Kwek – Extending Red List Assessments from a Herbarium Database

Enoka Kudavidanage

Grace Blackham

Undergraduate students

Anne Devan-Song – Evaluating the Impact of Reticulated Python Predation on the Fauna of Singapore

Yea Tian Teo – A Habitat Enrichment Project to Encourage Breeding of Kalophrynus pleurostigma in Singapore

Some of the BioD crew at the closing banquet

The Environmental Leadership Training Initiative (ELTI) joint initiative of  Yale School of Forestry & Environmental Studies and Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute, which is based at DBS, also organized a symposium called “REDD’s Role in the Conservation of Tropical Biodiversity”.

There were also quite a few familiar faces: alumni who are pursuing their studies and careers in other pastures, but still doing great conservation research:


Lian Pin Koh – Conservation in Human- modified Landscapes: Sidestepping the Tradeoffs of Oil Palm Expansion

Reuben Clements – ‘Killer Roads’ Threatening Endangered Mammals in Southeast Asia

Giam Xingli – Native Latitudinal Range, and Growth Habit Predict Progression Through the Plant Invasion Continuum on a Tropical Island

Norman Lim –  Habitat Preference of The Sunda Colugo (Galeopterus variegatus) in Tropical Forests of Singapore

Janice Lee – Modeling Livelihood Impacts in the Context of Land Use Changes from Biofuel Expansion in Indonesia

Kang Min Ngo – Dynamics of a 50-Year Old Secondary Forest in Singapore

Current and alumni DBS grad students

It was great opportunity to reunite, meet and mingle with tropical conservation scientists from all over the world. All in all, a fun and fruitful meeting. You can find out more information about the conference at this website: ATBC 2010. Next year the annual meeting will be held in Tanzania – hope there will be another strong contingent from DBS there!

Marine Bio Lab super cleanup

In case you still don’t know what was the smell that dominated the S1 & S2 building at 31/07/2008 (Thursday), it was coming from the fridge of the field store!

20+ people joined the Marine Bio Lab’s SUPER cleanup yesterday, and successfully tidied up the lab, the (ultra stinky) field store and the dive store! Kudos to the lab’s members!

A little bit of sidelines:
– Terrapin blood stinks, badly…
– More than 3 types of air refreshers, together with N95 masks, were used to make the cleaners staying alive!
– About 7-truck-trip of rubbish was dumped!

Small store…

Supports BIG diversity (and abundance)!

Frozen Freezer… Please use chisel to open…

Essential materials for cleaning…

How to clean a stinking fridge (without wearing mask!) – Abby

Thank you (the bosses) for the KFC, it’s “licking finger” good!