The entrance to Wind Cave (Gua Angin) at Mulu in N Sarawak. Note the tiny tourists right down at the bottom and the shrubs growing in the entrance to the cave. Many of the shrubs are fig plants the result of fruit bat defecation of the seeds. Short-nosed Fruit Bats (Cynopterus species)  roost above the entrance and Dusky Fruit Bats   (Penthetor lucasi) roost deep inside the cave.

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Ficus nervosa grows as a very tall tree whilst Ficus chartacea grows as a shrub. Although they are completely unrelated these 2 figs share two spot characters. (1) The juvenile leaves of both species  are pale pink or cream and (2) The stipules are smooth  and sharp like a sharp pointed awl or needle. However the stipules of Ficus chartacea are max.  1 cm long whilst the stipules of F. nervosa  are nearly always more than 1 cm long. See the photos below.

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Melinau River IMG_4309.JPG

To get to Wind Cave you need to take a  30 minute boat trip along the Melinau River.

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Ficus nervosa growing inside the cave mouth at Wind Cave, Mulu.
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Ficus nervosa at the entrance to Wind Cave, Mulu.

Mulu Map

north Sarawak Map