Photo of the Week: Of trees, climate, palm oil, primates and elephants

Of trees, climate, palm oil, primates and elephants

Of trees, climate, palm oil, primates and elephants

Our next instalment of the ‘Photo of the Week’ series features Dr Amanda Korstjens’ image of Sikundur, in the Leuser Ecosystem, North Sumatra.  The series is a weekly instalment which features an image taken by our fantastic BU staff and students. The photos give a glimpse into some of the fascinating work our researchers have been doing across BU and the wider community.

The Leuser ecosystem is the last stronghold of the Sumatran rhino, tiger, elephant and orang-utan. Levels of human-wildlife conflict and hunting are growing and the ecosystem is being destroyed at an alarming rate.  The Life and Environmental Sciences’ Landscape Ecology and Primatology (LEAP) team have partnered up with local conservation leaders to investigate the effect these environmental changes have.

Pictured above is Sikundur, in North Sumatra where the LEAP team are carrying out research into vegetation structure, micro-climates, and primate & elephant habitats. LEAP bring scientific understanding of how landscape scale changes to the environment affect forest structure and local micro-climate and look at how climate change may alter the survival chances of primates and elephants. LEAP’s impact aim is to provide scientifically sound underpinnings to develop mitigation strategies.

In April 2017 Dr Korstjens featured in American radio/internet show ‘The Global Journalist’ which can be viewed here.

If you’d like find out more about the research or the photo itself then please contact Dr Korstjens.

This photo was originally an entry in the 2017 Research Photography Competition. If you have any other questions about the Photo of the Week series or the competition please email