Assisting a fieldwork campaign in Indonesia was not among my plans for a busy 2010. It popped up as a hard to repeat opportunity so I accepted the invitation. Not only I met the amazing Indonesian natural world, but I reinforced my skills in setting experiments in the field and sampling in tropical seagrass ecosystems while working with a lovely and enthusiastic team. I am indebted to Dr. Yayu A. La Nafie and Dr. Tjeerd J. Bouma for involving me in the fieldwork and for their gently support.
This field campaign was part of the PhD project of Yayu A. La Nafie, from the Royal Netherlands Institute for Sea Research and the Department of Marine Science at the Hasanuddin University. The main aim was to study how environmental factors affect seagrass leaf breaking resistance. We visited different islands in the Spermonde archipelago (in front of Makassar, South Sulawesi), and we conducted an experiment in the Bone Batang island on the biomechanical response of two tropical seagrass species to shading and fertilization.
- The wonderful mixed seagrass meadows, ranging from the tiny Halophila ovalis to the large Enhalus acoroides.
- The huge diversity of corals, fish, invertebrates, etc… associated to the seagrass meadows.
- Seeing a clown-fish (Nemo) for the first time.
- The amiability and hospitality of locals.
- The delicious Indonesian dish Gado-Gado.
The scientific output
- La Nafie YA, de los Santos CB, Brun FG, Mashoreng S, van Katwijk MM, Bouma TJ. 2013 Biomechanical response of two fast-growing tropical seagrass species subjected to in situ shading and sediment fertilization. Journal of Experimental Marine Biology and Ecology. 446: 186-193.
- La Nafie YA, de los Santos CB, Bouma TJ, Brun FG, Mashoreng S, van Katwijk MM. (submitted). Biomechanical properties of two slow-growing tropical seagrass species: plasticity and relation to morphometry.