Only a week behind! Week 4 was spent in KL running samples, clearing up bits from the field and recovering from a cold I managed to catch (I know! In the tropics!). Data collection in general is going well, there’s been a moments where things haven’t gone as expected but I’ve managed to work through them, it’s a nice reward for the weeks I spent packing and preparing back in the UK and I really hope all that preparation time will be worth it when I finally finish fieldwork and look at all the data I have. On Sunday I took half a day off and went to the Forest Research Institute Malaysia based just outside of KL. This is a working research centre that is also open to the public. Such a brilliant idea. Now I know not every research group has several acres of forest to display but it did make me think how many other great collections, facilities and other hidden gems research may have that could be open to the public. If anyone else has any suggestions of other active research centres open to visitors I’d love to hear about them. The downside was that I visited FRIM on a Saturday and so many of the facilities, such as the insectariums, were shut.
I didn’t miss the indoor exhibits, however, as I spent a couple of steamy hours trekking up through their forest and 150 terrifying metres on their canopy walkway which provides the best view of the park through the treetops. Unfortunately any chance of wildlife spotting was set at zero by the annoyingly odd ‘holiday camp’ style karaoke/concert going on at the edge of the park but I still saw lots of beautiful plants.
For anyone that is in/wants to visit KL FRIM is accessible via KTM commuter from KL Sentral – travel to Kepong or Kepong Central and catch a taxi (both have taxi ranks, ask around if you can’t find them). Either arrange for your taxi driver to pick you up again later or walk back down to the main road and hail a cab back to the KTM station from the main road.
**Unrelated but there’s an interesting short article on a rare seahorse species found in the Thames for the first time here.**