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Visiting Scientists - 2004

Ahyong, Shane
Anker , Arthur
Bartsch, Ilse
Castro, Peter
Chan Tin-Yam
Chou Wen-Hao
Davie, Peter
Hayashida, Akiko
Kottelat, Maurice
Lin Chia Wei
Linis, Virgilio
Markham, John
Norsham Yaakob
Pandit, M. K.
Payne, Robert B.
Rahayu, Dwi Listyo
Shekell, Myron

Dr Shane Ahyong

Affliliation: Australian Museum, Sydney, Australia
Research topic: Systematics and taxonomy of stomatopod crustaceans
Duration: 4-16 Oct 2004
Host: A/P Peter Ng

 

 

Dr Arthur Anker

Affliliation: Department of Biological Sciences, University of Alberta, Edmonton, Canada
Research topic: Systematics and taxonomy of alpheid shrimps
Duration: 7-21 Sep 2004
Host: A/P Peter Ng

Dr Ilse Bartsch

Affliliation: Forschungsinstitut Senckenberg, Frankfurt a.M., Germany
Research topic: Systematics and taxonomy of marine mites (Acari: Halacaridae)
Duration: 24 Sep-13 Oct 2004
Host: Dr Darren Yeo

Dr. Ilse Bartsch of the Forschungsinstitut Senckenberg, Frankfurt a.M., Germany was invited by Dr. Darren Yeo of the RMBR to visit the museum from 24 Sep to 13 Oct 2004, to study Singapore’s marine mite fauna (Acari). Dr Bartsch is a member of the Taxonomische Arbeitsgruppe, a working group of specialists responsible for determination of fauna and flora collected by German research vessels. She has extensive experience in ecology, biology, taxonomy, biogeography of meio- and macrobenthos, including ophiuroids, copepods, nemerteans, and myzostomids; and has over 200 publications on these subjects. Dr Bartsch’s current interest and speciality, however, is in the ecology and systematics of marine mites of the family Halacaridae, a group of invertebrates that has never been studied in this part of the world.

Dr Bartsch made intertidal field collections from various coastal habitats (mangroves, sandy beach, and rocky shore) around Singapore island, including Pandan, Punggol, Lim Chu Kang, Labrador Beach, East Coast Park and West Coast Park. She also spent 4 days sampling the various intertidal habitats on St John’s Island, with the generous support of the Tropical Marine Science Institute (TMSI). Lab work, which involved processing, sorting and rough identification of samples, was carried out at the Zoological Reference Collection of the RMBR as well as at TMSI (St John’s Island). Preliminary analysis of the samples collected indicates that there may be up to 20 species in seven genera of halacarid mites in Singapore. Dr Bartsch has brought the samples back to Germany for more detailed observations and confirmation of identities, following which, a report will be published.

Dr Bartsch presented a seminar on 6 Oct 2004 at the DBS Conference Room for a session of the Biodiversity and Ecology Journal Club of the Department of Biological Sciences. The seminar was entitled "Mites (Acari) in the marine littoral, an introduction", and it concluded with viewing of live specimens of various marine mite species.

Dr Peter Castro

Affliliation: Biological Sciences Department, California State Polytechnic University, Pomona, USA
Research topic: Systematics and taxonomy of marine crabs
Duration: 18 Oct-18 Nov 2004
Host: A/P Peter Ng/Tan Swee Hee

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Dr. Chan Tin-Yam & Mr. Lin Chia Wei

Affliliation: National Taiwan Ocean University, Taiwan
Research topic: Systematics and taxonomy of lobsters, shrimps and galatheids
Duration: 8-11 Sep 2004
Host: A/P Peter Ng

Dr Chou Wen-Hao

Affliliation: National Museum of Natural Science, Taiwan
Research topic: Systematics and taxonomy of frogs
Duration: 15-16 Sep 2004
Host: Mr Leong Tzi Ming

Mr Peter Davie

Affliliation: Queensland Museum, South Brisbane, Queensland, Australia
Research topic: Systematics and taxonomy of marine crabs
Duration: 1-27 Nov 2004
Host: A/P Peter Ng

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Ms Akiko Hayashida

Affliliation: Obihiro University of Agriculture and Veterinary Medicine
Research topic: Systematics and taxonomy of squirrels
Duration: Jul 2004
Host: Ms Lua Hui Kheng/Mr Kelvin Lim

Dr Maurice Kottelat

Affliliation: Independent Consultant; RMBR Honorary Research Associate
Research topic: Systematics and taxonomy of freshwater fishes
Duration: 23 Sep-24 Oct 2004
Host: Mr Kelvin Lim

Dr. Maurice Kottelat (Cornol, Switzerland), an expert on freshwater fishes, was on visiting attachments to the RMBR in Mar and Sep/Oct 2004 to conduct collaborative research with his hosts, resident ichthyologists, Mr Kelvin Lim and Dr Tan Heok Hui. Dr Kottelat, who specializes in fish taxonomy and ecology, is an independent consultant on aquatic biodiversity; he is also an Honorary Research Associate of the RMBR, and President of the European Ichthyological Society. He has written over 200 scientific papers on fish taxonomy, and eight books on fish diversity (freshwater fishes of Western Indonesia, Vietnam, Laos); and has over 24 years of field experience on freshwater fish fauna of Eurasia. In addition, he is Editor of the journal Ichthyological Exploration of Freshwaters; and Editorial Board member of the Raffles Bulletin of Zoology.

The primary objectives of Dr Kottelat’s visits were to work on the taxonomy of fishes from Sumatra, Borneo, Myanmar and China, which involved examination of fish specimens at RMBR. As a result of these studies, several manuscripts have been completed and submitted for review to journals.

In addition his taxonomic work at RMBR, Dr Kottelat also participated in the ALL CATFISH SPECIES INVENTORY Workshop (Asian Chapter) held at the NUS in Apr 2004; and carried out editing and reviewing of manuscripts for the Raffles Bulletin of Zoology.

Dr Kottelat also gave a lecture on 7 Oct 2004 entitled “Fish and dams in Laos – Field studies in environmental assessments and conservation” to a class of graduate students from the Department of Biological Sciences (DBS), as part of the graduate module on Field Study Techniques (BL5219). The lecture was concurrently run as a session of the Biodiversity and Ecology Journal Club of the DBS, NUS.

Mr. Virgilio Linis

Affliliation: De LaSalle University, Manila, Philippines
Research topic: Moss diversity of Mariveles Mountain Range in Bataan Province, Luzon Island, Philippines
Duration: 8-22 Aug 2004
Host: A/P Benito Tan

Prof. Virgilio Linis, a bryologist from the Department of Biology at De la Salle University in Manila, The Philippines, visited RMBR under the visiting attachment programme from 8-21 Aug 2004 at the invitation of A/P Benito Tan.

Prof Linis’ field of expertise is in Bryology and Plant conservation. The aims of this visit were to work with his host, A/P Benito C. Tan, on his large collections of mosses made from Zambales Moutnain Range and Mt Arayat in western and central Luzon Island of the Philippines.

Lab work mainly involved identifying mosses from the many difficult Philippine moss collections. This took place at the Cryptogam Laboratory and SINU Herbarium. Preliminary findings from the studies here include the discovery of two new species records and one species new to science for the Philippine moss flora, amongst the hundreds of moss collections studied. More than 50 species records were confirmed for the little known Zambales mountains in Luzon. These results were presented orally by Prof. Linis in a special cryptogam session at the Flora Malesiana symposium held in the Philippines from Sept 20-24 2004. Following which, the data will be jointly published by the two collaborators.

As a continuation of the work done and results achieved during this visit, Prof Linis and A/P Benito also discussed future collaborative field work in Zambales Mountain Range and nearby places in western Luzon.

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Dr John Markham

Affliliation: Arch Cape Marine Laboratory, Oregon USA
Research topic: Systematics and taxonomy of Isopoda Bopyridae
Duration: 2-6 Mar 2004
Host: A/P Peter Ng/Mr Yeo Keng Loo

Dr M. K. Pandit

Affliliation: Centre for Inter-disciplinary Studies of Mountain & Hill Environment, University of Delhi, India
Research topic: Relationship between polyploidy and invasiveness of common weeds in Singapore
Duration: 21 Jun-21 Jul 2004
Host: A/P Hugh Tan

Prof M. K. Pandit, a conservation and evolutionary biologist from the Centre for Inter-disciplinary Studies of Mountain & Hill Environment, University of Delhi, visited RMBR under the visiting attachment programme from 21 Jun-21 Jul 2004 at the invitation of A/P Hugh Tan. Prof Pandit, who obtained his PhD from the University of Dehli, specializes in Conservation Biology, Evolutionary Biology, Biodiversity Conservation & Management, and Environment Impact Assessment.

The objectives of the visit included conducting collaborative research with A/P Hugh Tan on a chromosome atlas of the angiosperms of Singapore; a cytological study of the invasive plant species of Singapore; and a cytological study of Rafflesia cantleyi Solms-Laubach (Rafflesiaceae). The work on these projects is ongoing, with about 40% of the work completed for all three projects so far. During Prof Pandit’s stay here, lab work was carried out at Plant Systematics Laboratory, while field work was carried out at various wasteland sites of Singapore.

In addition to the collaborative work done with A/P Hugh Tan, new collaborations were initiated between Prof. Pandit and A/P Navjot Sodhi for research on Himalayan biology and conservation biology.

Prof Pandit also presented a seminar entitled “It is sex stupid: loss of sex in Himalayan species” on 8 Jul 2004 at a session of the Biodiversity and Ecology Journal Club.

Dr Robert B. Payne

(Curator of Birds and Professor of Zoology, Museum of University of Michigan, USA)
Research topic: Systematic and taxonomy of Estrildidae and Cuculidae
Duration: 28 Jan - 6 Feb 2004
Host: Mrs Yang Chang Man

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Dr Dwi Listyo Rahayu

Affliliation: Indonesian Institute of Sciences
Research topic: Systematics and taxonomy of hermit crabs
Duration: Jul 2004
Host: A/P Peter Ng

Dr. Myron Shekell

Affliliation: Center for Biodiversity Studies and Conservation, University of Indonesia
Research topic: Systematics and taxonomy of tarsiers
Duration: 7 Sep 2004
Host: Mr Kelvin Lim

Ms. Norsham Yaakob

Malaysia
Research topic: Amphibians
Duration: 4-6 Oct 2004
Host: Mr Kelvin Lim

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