View of Bod Gaya (Bajau=large island) from the summit of of Bohey Dulang (Bajau=fresh water pools), two of the 8 Semporna Islands included in the Tun Sakaran Marine Park in Sabah, Malaysian Borneo. The third small island on the left of the photo is Tetagan (Bajau=linked island).
The coral reefs of the Tun Sakaran Marine Park are the traditional foraging grounds of a community of Bajau’s (Sea Gypsies) who traditionally live a semi-nomadic life on their small house boats harvesting the produce of coral reefs. The majority of Bajaus in Sabah now live on land and form of a significant proportion of the Sabah population.
All three islands are the weathered remnants of the ancient rim of a volcanic crater.
At the bottom of the photo is the boat jetty for tourists wishing to climb the steep path to the telecom mast on the summit of Bohey Dulang (353 m asl).
In Berg & Corner’s (2005) list of figs found in Borneo only one collection of Ficus concinna for Borneo is listed – the collection illustrated in this article.
Sabah’s east coast islands are on the western edge of major botanical, zoological and political divides. Politically the islands to the right of the line (east) Sibutu and Sitangki belong to the Philippines whilst the islands to the left (west) belong to the Malaysian state of Sabah on the island of Borneo. The 16 km gap between Sibutu (Philippines) and the Semporna Islands (Borneo) is the shortest sea gap across Wallaces Line for the whole of Borneo. It is extraordinary that such a narrow gap has acted as an effective dispersal barrier for so many different plants, birds and mammals.
The excellent botanical survey linked below mentions only one fig (Ficus deltoidea) and makes no mention of Wallace’s Line, so there is plenty of room for further investigation !