Biodiversity of the Sebangau tropical peat swamp forest, Indonesian Borneo

The importance of Southeast Asia’s tropical peat swamp forests for biodiversity is becoming increasingly recognised. Information on species presence within peatland areas is scant, however, limiting our ability to develop species conservation strategies and monitor responses to human activities. We compile species presence records for the Sebangau forest in Indonesian Borneo since 1993 and present the most complete Bornean PSF biodiversity inventory yet published. Including morpho-species that are likely to represent true species, this list comprises 215 tree, 92 non-tree flora, 73 ant, 66 butterfly, 297 spider, 41 dragon/damselfly, 55 fish, 11 amphibian, 46 reptile, 172 bird and 65 mammal taxa. Of these, 46 species are globally threatened and 59 are currently protected in Indonesia; 22 vertebrate species are Borneo endemics. Because our sampling is both biased and incomplete, the true number of species found at this site is likely to be much higher. Little is known about many of these taxa in Sebangau and peat swamp forests elsewhere. Many of these species are considered forest dependent, and the entire community is expected to be important for maintaining the resilience of the peat swamp forest ecosystem and the environmental services that it provides. This highlights the need for urgent conservation of Sebangau and its diverse biological community.
  • Authors: Husson, S.J., Limin, S.H., Adul, Boyd, N.S., Brousseau, J.J., Collier, S., Cheyne, S.M., D’Arcy, L.J., Dow, R.A., Dowds, N.W., Dragiewicz, M.L., Ehlers Smith, D.A., Iwan, Hendri, Houlihan, P.R., Jeffers, K.A., Jarrett, B.J.M., Kulu, I.P., Morrogh-Bernard, H.C., Page, S.E., Perlett, E.D., Purwanto, A., Capilla, B.R., Salahuddin, Santiano, Schreven, S.J.J., Struebig, M.J., Thornton, S.A., Tremlett, C., Yeen, Z., Harrison, M.E.
  • Author Affiliation: Borneo Nature Foundation, University of Palangka Raya, University of Exeter, Oxford Brookes University, Naturalis Biodiversity Center, University of KwaZulu-Natal, University of Florida, University of Cambridge, University of Leicester, Wageningen University & Research, University of Kent
  • Subjects: biodiversity, peatlands, swamps, tropical forests, conservation, ecosystem management
  • Publication type: Journal Article
  • Source: Mires and Peat 22: 5
  • Year: 2018
  • DOI:
Latest posts


Founding member states
Republic of Indonesia Republic of the Congo Democratic Republic of the Congo Republic of Peru
Coordinating partners
Ministry of Environment and Forestry Republic of Indonesia CIFOR UN Environment FAO