Monday, May 10, 2010

MNS Miri Branch May Updates and News

Dear Valued Members,

It's been a manic April, and May looks to be the same!

A warm welcome to our latest new members : Joyce, Prem, Anis, Fatin, Khairul, Johan, Nurazura, Jumasri of Curtin University; Ahmad and Sofina of Pustaka Miri, Nooriza and new school member SMK Merbau.

Don't forget those brilliant suggestions and what activities you'd be partial to volunteer for and would like to see offered by MNS Miri Branch.


1. CEP Meeting with SFC Miri, 08th April
Nazeri and Musa attended this meeting to suss out 2010 CEP programs with community and schools around our national parks. We've committed participation on several sessions.

Please read more here.

2. Lambir Special Park Commitee Meeting, Lambir, 15th April
Nazeri attended and chaired this meeting at Lambir Hills. Present were Kamal (SPC Secretary), Lambir Park staff and community representatives from communities surrounding the park.

3 . Branch Committee Meeting, SSB Office, 20th April
Sara, Ernyza, Puteri, Nazeri, Peter, Aju and Wanie attended. Those present discussed Curtin Earth Day, WMBD 2010 and Kinabalu Triple Do events.

Nazeri announced Grace's resignation from Branch EXCO and Co-opted Kumar (Branch Reefcheck Project). Puteri was appointed Acting Secretary to take over Grace's tasks until a new Secretary is elected at the next branch AGM.

Branch AGM has been tentatively agreed to be held 17-18th July at Lambir Hills National Park. Enyza will be focal point for all AGM activities this year.

4. NREB Workshop on SCORE, Bintulu, 22nd April
Regret. No attendance recorded from Miri and Kuching Branches.

5. Curtin University Events, 22nd April
a. MNS Booth 10-4pm. Books, posters exhibition.

i) Lucky Draw for New Memberships (3 years membership onwards) - 1x 40x8 Savvy binoculars to be won, worth $300. Lucky winner was new member Premkumar

ii) Lucky Draw for New Memberships (1 year -2 year membership) - 6x "MNS Miri T-shirts" were allocated to new members : Anis, Fatin, Khairul Johan, Nurazura and Joyce who signed up as new members at the event.

iii)Lucky Draw for those who visit our booth - 1x Year student membership. Lucky winner was Jumasri.

b. Introduction to Birdwatching around Campus with MNS Miri 5-6pm.
15 participants tagged along a short loop around campus and we ticked 21 species of common garden and open grassland birds. A new record for us was a Pond Heron in almost breeding colors.

c. Talk and Slideshow "Birds of South America" by Dr Ron Orenstein
Dr Orenstein enthralled those who attended with his pictures and stories of unique and beautiful birds of the southern continent. Sweeping vistas grand landscape of the south captured the attention and imagination of the majority in the room.

6. Lambir Trek Series April
Sara, Peter and Faye have been dilligently scaling the trails with regulars at Lambir Hills National Park.

7. SFC's CEP with Sibuti Wildlife Sanctuary staff, Kpg Kuala Sibuti, 05th May
Gianna, Musa and Nazeri joined SWS and other SFC staff during their evening community outreach and education program in this small village at the estuary of Sg Sibuti. Musa presented "Fireflies Miri" and Gianna went over Project Dolphins recent work and updates. The team of almost 15 people we feted with ikan bakar at the end of the session.

We also renewed acquaintance with Ketua Kaum Saini who hosted us at the village during our Bekenu-Similajau Longwalk back in Dec 2008.

At KK Saini's invitation, we may be involved in more community outreach programs in this village to tap into local knowledge on dolphins, fireflies, waterbirds and crocodiles. Watch this space.

8. World Migratory Bird Day 2010, Pustaka Miri, 8-9th May
We hosted Kho Swee Seng at Lambir Hills National Park Chalet No. 3 for our 3rd year celebration of WMBD. Pustaka Miri hosted Seng and his talk at the A/V room filled to capacity. Though 70 students attended the talk and slideshow on beautiful birds, there were limited number of branch members who attended. Only fifteen people participated in the field excursion the next day, well below the number we expected for the 38 seater air-condition bus.

Lucky draw winners:
i) Free One year Family membership : Ahmad Samsudin of Pustaka Miri
ii) Free One year School Membership : SMK Merbau represented by Cikgu Lee Ngaie Ping
iii) Free MNS Miri T-Shirts : students Adi, Hamirul, Suzieana, Charles and Fionna.

MNS Miri Branch also extended a complementary individual membership to Sofina Tan, Pustaka Miri in recognition of her efforts in promulgating our presence within the Miri community through collaborative events and knowledge activities at the Pustaka the past 4 years.


1. Kinabalu Triple 14-16th May Kinabalu National Park
As part of our MNS 70th Anniversary Event celebration, MNS Miri and Sabah Branch with be at KNP weekend of 14th May for another series of activities for members and surrounding local community.

a. Mount Kinabalu Climb Arriving 14th May
This slot is booked. Sara will be leading a team of climbers to the peak.

b. Birdwatching with Students at KNP (extention of WMBD 2010 in Sabah)
MNS Sabah and Miri Branch birders will be taking 40 local students around the park to introduce them to a few endemics.

c. Astronomy with designated Kundasang School 15-16th May
We have selected a school in Kundasang for a full day Astronomy program involving Stargazing, Water-rocket building and launching.

Members interested to participate and join in the fun are encouraged to book flights to KK ASAP. Accomodations arrangement if needed will be taken care of by our contact in KK.

Check out MNS Miri Facebook Events for more detailed program.

2. SFC Conservation Education Program at Loagan Bunut, 22-23rd May
Volunteers needed, please checkout schedules here if you are an MNS member and would like to actively contribute to the programs and activities for 2010.

3. Short Sojourn in Long Lamai, 28th May-01st June
A small party from the Miri and Kuching branch will be making the trek to Long Lamai to check out e-Lamai, nearby trails and waterfalls and maybe procure pictures of rare birds, maybe a Bulwer's Pheasant or two.

4. MY Garden Birdwatch, 5 and 6th June, in your own garden and backyard
Learn more about birds in your backyard by participating in our inaugural MY Garden Birdwatch either on the 5th or 6th of July. Help us map out our garden bird population and distribution via a few simple steps. First ever Malaysia wide citizen-science opportunity!

Learn more here.

5. MNS National Roadshow, Pustaka Miri, 19-20th June
MNS President will be visiting Miri to meet members and discussed the Society's newly rolled out Constitution. A forum with members will be held at the end of the mini slideshows.

a) Exhibition (all day) and Mini Talks and Slideshow (2-4pm), 19th June
b) Excursion to Tusan Cliffs to checkout Fossils

All members will be individually invited to the events via email and personal phone call from HQ.
Members are encouraged to attend.

6. [Postphone to July] Batek Workshop with Malek Adenan
A repeat of a half day program making batek prints with Malek Adenan, our resident batek artist and member.

7. Advance announcement :

a) Trek/Birdwatch Gunung Murud, 18-23rd October 2010
This trip is confirmed, final costing is being finalised. Fly Bakelalan, trek Mt Murud, fly Miri via Lawas. Opportunity for extended birdwatching at Church camp for those who suffer from fear of heights (like Nazeri). We will be hiring guides and porters as required.

b) Trek/Birdwatch Nepal, April/May 2011
Details can be viewed at MNS Miri Events on Facebook. Further details will be shared with members once Air Asia published their cheaprates for 2011. Expected costs MYR$4000.


1. A big THANK YOU to members who've taken the time to renew their membership.
Those who havent, please do so at your earliest convenience. Please contact us if you require assistance or more information on how to renew your membership painlessly and hassle free.

You can now bank in to either Maybank (Account No: 012138304679) or HSBC (Account No: 305194920108) beneficiary name "Malaysian Nature Society".

Please email notifications to

Members whose membership expires 31st Dec, and have not renewed:
Samantha Kwan

Membership of the following members expired 31st Jan, and have not renewed:
Jeit Law
Rebecca Pek

Members whose membership expires 28th Feb, and have not renewed:
Chia Lee Ming, Josephine
Kiew Siew Eng (no email)
Lim Geok Hoon (no email)
Mohammad Hatta Rizal Mansor
Tan Kok Khian
Tisha-Lin Sinnathamboo
Wong Chung

Members whose membership expires 30th April, and have not renewed:
Chris Haneveld
Malek Adenan
Mieke Kosters
Rosaria Liong

Members whose membership expires 31st May:
Farah Abdullah
Kumareson Paranthaman

Please take time to renew your membership, your Society needs your support. If you need assistance, please contact us.

2. Please keep updated with Branch activities via our blog and Facebook
Do keep abreast with weekly activities via our blogspot especially for those quick events, they normally crystalize by Thursday latest.

Go to

For Facebook, please search for "MNS Miri".

We need writers and pictures for our blogs, Pencinta Alam, Malaysian Naturalists ... blog contributors are welcomed.

If you think you are not great at writing, just jot something down anyway, we've got folks who can help you put out a nice story for the blog. If you have articles, write-ups and pictures to share, please email

They can be uploaded in any of one our blogs.

Please email any comments, suggestions to or leave your comments on this blog.

Thank you and kindest regards,
Nazeri Abghani
on behalf of MNS Miri Branch Committee

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