Student Nature Enthusiasts Universitas Gadjah Mada (Indonesian acronym: MAPAGAMA) succeeded in exploring karst caves in Thailand. During the expedition, which started 4 May 2017, the MAPAGAMA Team succeeded in exploring and mapping the caves in four districts in Satun Province, Thailand.
Heni Ismawati, one of the members of MAPAGAMA who went on the expedition in Thailand said the MAPAGAMA Team had explored several caves in four districts in Satun Province which were Ngu District, La Ngu, Manang, and Khuan Ka Long. The exploration consisted of geomorphology observation in a karst area in South Thailand and mapping seven caves whose characteristics included old rock composition and a dominant mixture of argillaceous limestone and pure limestone.
“We also held a presentation in Satun Geopark before conducting area observation and caves mapping,” said Heni.
During the expedition, the MAPAGAMA Team succeeded in finding 26 coordinates of the cave mouths three of which were found in Taban Island which is known to have 50 caves, both horizontal, vertical, as well as hanging caves.
Heni further said during the expedition, her team also conducted observations and interviews with the chief of the Maniq Manang tribe and the community who live in the inland forest in South Thailand. There are around 300 people which are spread across four districts in South Thailand.
“We hope we can keep building collaboration with Satun Geopark for enhancing the quality of the karst area management and geopark concept in preserving those areas.
The cave expedition in Thailand was the fourth international expedition staged by MAPAGAMA. The first expedition was River of Gold in Nepal in 2013, the second was Rock of Pyramid in China in 2013, and the third expedition was Peak of the Ancestor in India in 2016.
MAPAGAMA sent its seven members on this cave expedition. They were Fahmi Arsyad (Faculty of Animal Sciences), Dimas Dirham (Faculty of Geography), Hajar Lutvia (Faculty of Forestry), Mohammad Anwar (Vocational School), Heni Ismawati (Vocational School), and Muhammad Ilham (Faculty of Engineering). (Fiki)