This research can be broadly categorised into three main components, all of which include both assessment and monitoring work:
Research on forest condition includes use of remote imagery to study changes in forest area coverage; tree plots to assess and monitor forest structure (e.g. tree density, mean tree size), above-ground tree biomass and monthly fruit availability; and litter-fall traps to measure overall forest productivity. Assessment of habitat area and quality is a vital component of monitoring primate populations. In areas without hunting (as is the case in LAHG Research Area within the Sebangau National Park at present), it is food availability in the forest that will have the largest influence on these populations.
Our long-term data sets allow us to assess trends and spatial variations in relation to changes in primate populations, climate and human activities. Such data are therefore crucial for evaluating and improving the effectiveness of conservation efforts.
Our studies of forest processes and functions have incorporated research on seed dispersal, including the role played by orangutans , gibbons and red langurs, and the potential impacts of fruit-bat hunting on their role as seed dispersers. We are investigating the impacts of canals and canal damming on ecosystem hydrological function in peat-swamp forests, which provides important benefits to society in terms of both fire and flood prevention.
Our forest ecology research