This large, Philippine tree has thick dark brown to nearly black bark with a reddish tinge (2). The trunk is ridged with shallow furrows and bears no branches for the first 20 to 30 metres (2)(3). The tough, leathery leaves measure up to 17 centimetres long and 7.5 centimetres wide and taper toward the tip. The cream-coloured flowers are borne in clusters of four and are said to have a ‘sick-like’ odour (2). The turban-shaped fruits of the red lauan are around 1.9 centimetres wide, covered with silky yellow hairs and each bears five long wings (4).
Red lauan numbers have become depleted due to logging and slash-and-burn agriculture (2). Red lauan is a valuable timber (3), which is exported to be used in furniture, boat and building construction (2).
The red lauan most likely occurs in a number of protected areas throughout the Philippines, such as the Sierra Madre. However, despite this so-called protection, illegal logging activities can continue to pose a threat (6).
Trees of the family Dipterocarpaceae: resinous trees that are found in the old world tropics.
The transfer of pollen grains from the stamen (male part of a flower) to the stigma (female part of a flower) of a flowering plant. This usually leads to fertilisation, the development of seeds and, eventually, a new plant.
The cutting and burning of forests or woodlands to create space for agriculture or livestock.
De Guzman, E.D., Umali, R.M. and Sotalbo, E.D. (1986) Guide to Philippine Flora and Fauna. Volume 3: Dipterocarps and Non-Dipterocarps. Natural Resources Management Center, Ministry of Natural Resources and University of the Philippines, Philippines.
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