Kuala Selangor is the ideal location for this event, not merely because the Kuala Selangor Nature Park is managed by MNS, but because of the amazing biodiversity and natural beauty in Kuala Selangor, a district known for its synchronous congregating firefly population.
In 2011, I developed the Firefly Conservation and Awareness Programme with the assistance of Sonny, the MNS Head of Science and Conservation, along with my incredible volunteers, Liza Manshoor, Ilani Manshoor and Sheela Prabhakaran. We were happy to repeat the programme this year due to its success last year, and I am pleased to report that we received an encouraging response from the public at our booth and for our activities this year as well.
One of the side attractions at our Firefly Conservation Awareness Booth -- Games! In the Nerf gun challenge, visitors learn to identify threats to firefly habitats (which include the clearing of river reserves, large scale oil palm cultivation, unregulated sand mining activities, river widening for flood mitigation, water pollution and poor waste management) and shoot them down. They have to name at least one threat to firefly habitats before picking up their prize(s) to ensure that this doesn't descend into a gratuitous game of target practice.
The second challenge, the buzzwire challenge, helps visitors develop empathy for fireflies and acquire natural history knowledge in the process.
Wise Macaque, he says: "A worm in banana is better than half a worm in tummy."
Young visitors trying out the buzzwire game at our Firefly Conservation & Awareness Booth.
A horseshoe crab in one of the mangrove exhibits set up by the schoolchildren. They assured me that they would release the horseshoe crab on Sunday evening.
And so another meaningful yet fun Festival of Wings came to an end on a rainy Sunday evening. But the Kuala Selangor Nature Park remains open to visitors all year around.
The Kuala Selangor Nature Park has been under the management of the Malaysian Nature Society since 1987. For more information, please contact:
Kuala Selangor Nature Park (KSNP)
Tel : (603) 3289 2294
Fax : (603) 3289 4311
Link: MNS KSNP
Firefly Watching Etiquette:
1. Do not switch on bright lights. This includes lights from mobile phones and cameras.
2. Do not talk loudly or make unnecessary noise.
3. Do not try to catch or touch fireflies or break branches of trees to get a closer look.
4. Do not litter. Please bring your litter out with you.
What You Can Do To Help Firefly Populations:
1. Switch off all unnecessary outdoor lighting.
2. Keep the environment clean and free of litter, especially near rivers, ponds and lakes.
3. Avoid using pesticides.
4. Use only natural fertilisers.
5. If you live near/beside Sg. Selangor, please avoid felling trees, clearing natural vegetation, farming activities that involve the use of chemicals and sand-mining on riverbanks.