[Mastwatch] Shorea albida

Cam Webb cwebb at oeb.harvard.edu
Sun Apr 6 19:21:58 PDT 2014

[Posting message for list from Ian Baillie]

Hi Peter and All

My apologies for my slow response.  I have read the correspondence with

My contribution is dated, as I last looked at Sarawak met dat some 30+ years
ago.  There must be more stations and much longer data runs now.

My speculation then as to why droughts are more frequent along the coasts
(if this is indeed confirmed by fuller modern data) was roughly:

1 There was not much coast-inland difference during the monsoonal periods of
widespread prolonged cyclonic rainfall
2 In the inter-monsoonsal periods, rainfall was mainly as intense localised
convectional  storms, which originated from spatially varaiable intense
warming and  development of cells of unstable up-wafting air
3 These convectional storms developed less on the coast because the
potentially unstable  cells were bled off by sea breezes in the later part
of the day.
4 Therefore the there is lower frequency of drought-relieving connectional
rainfall near coasts .

But I never developed this any further so it remains speculative

I look forward to hearing how this discussion progresses.



> From:  "Ashton, Peter" 
> Date:  Tuesday, 25 March 2014 10:58
> Subject:  RE: [Mastwatch] Shorea albida
> Hi ewverybody,
> All interesting, including Colin (Maycock?) at Danum who says there has been
> little drought up there to date, - out of kilter with Sunda further west as
> so often. But there is another potentially intriguing aspect of this issue
> which UBD sleuths can get on to, and for which I have brought Ian Baillie in
> as he has had an interest in the coastal climate of NW Borneo: Primary
> seringawan forest should evapotranspire roughly as much vapour as the sea
> surface, so where is the climatic coastline, on the true sea front or at the
> back of swamps where extensive? Of course coastal development, and
> conversion to oil palm down the coast, wil laffect this. But, if the
> climatic coastline is at the back of the swamp, that might explain why
> swamps flower at different times from inland forests.
> And Joe (it is always good to hear from you!), what has happened to what was
> left of Andulau, by far the most important forest for conservation from a
> tree species endemism perspective (and probably a lot more, such as soil
> fauna and flora, and arthropods, besides)?
> Peter

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