From flowering plants to butterflies , invasive species are taking over Batu Caves. This alarming threat to the fragile limestone ecosystem needs addressing.
WE HAD trekked up Batu Caves for about 10 minutes when botanist Dr Ruth Kiew turned to me and asked, “Can you see the difference in the vegetation?”
“Between limestone and non-limestone vegetation, you mean?”
I scanned the plants before me. This was pre-pandemic times and I had been researching limestone species from lists provided by Kiew.
(Photo: Invasive species threaten plants like the keladi (foreground), discovered only 2 years ago and found only on Batu Caves, says limestone specialist Ruth Kiew. ~ pic by SL Wong)