Saturday, October 19, 2019

Trees: An Antidote to Desertification

by Professor Alon Tal When the United Nations and the World Bank brought together the best minds in ecology from around the world to assess...

Nature’s Lightning Show

Utterly enthralled by the enigmatic nature of dramatic thunderstorms, Jacci Ingham, a photographer from Darwin, sets off on a mission to record these beautiful...

The Birth of Divergence: The Discovery of the Tadpole-Laying Frog

Text and images by Djoko T. Iskandar During an expedition in 1989, a small, common-looking frog with a body length of about 40 milli-metres was...

Invasion of the Bloodiest: Asia’s Bite-Size Biters

by Associate Professor Gregor Devine Mosquitos – those bloodsucking demons that have roamed the face of the Earth for more than 100 million years –...

Top 5 Reasons Why Coral Communities Are Dying or Flourishing

Greenhouse gases are wreaking havoc on land and ocean temperatures all over the Earth. The rise in sea and ocean temperatures has caused widespread...

Singapore’s Bloom: 5 Rare Flowers of an Island Nation

HANGUANA NEGLECTA • Small primary forest herb with black berries native to Singapore and extending to Johor, Peninsular Malaysia • Considered Critically Endangered (IUCN Red List) • Currently, only a...

India’s Superlative Banyan Trees

Asia is a land of superlatives – the largest countries, the most populous nations, the highest mountains, and the lowest regions. It’s a much...

The Great Forests of Asia

Humanity’s increasing and often clashing needs for food, fuel, fibre and forests (4Fs) lie at the heart of the 21st-century challenge to balance local...

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The Starch of Sweet Success

Lush emerald rice paddies provide textural contrast to limpid fish ponds filled with ceaselessly darting pearly carp, attesting to the abundant bounty of the Pearl River Delta, South China’s blessing.
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The Uniquely Southeast Asian Sport of Sepak Takraw

Sepak takraw may have been around since the 15th century, but it’s no forgotten relic. Find out more about the history of this fast-growing sport – and its bid for Olympic recognition


The Hindu devotee’s hands are pressed together. His palms touch, close to his chest, and his fingers point upwards. His brightly-coloured turban is in stark contrast to his thick white beard. “Namaste,” he says with a slight bow. Literally translated, the word means “I bow to the divine in you.” A respectful greeting, namaste, or namaskar, combined with the wordless hand gesture, conveys the same meaning of acknowledgement for a loved one, a guest or a stranger, regardless of the speaker’s language, culture or religion.