On the way to the caves

Thursday 13th November, from base camp in Kumawa.

The speleologists and the karstologists went scouting to try to find caves. Today like yesterday, they went up river from the sea. They found some resurgences and three caves they could not explore in depth unfortunately, because they quickly ended in a siphon. To carry on, they would have had to dive to get through the flooded passageways. They also went down a well, to a depth of 25 meters where the water enters the karst.

They are very pleased after these 2 days, because they are starting to better understand the local hydrographical network. Furthermore, they crossed some very pretty parts of the forest, with beautiful waterfalls.

But where is the cave? – Copyright : G. Maistre / IRD

But, where is the cave? – Copyright : G. Maistre / IRD

To enter the cavity, you have to swim – Copyright : G. Maistre / IRD

You have to swim to enter the cavity – Copyright : G. Maistre / IRD

Arnaud, who went with them, managed to collect a few invertebrates, but fewer than in Urisa. He is eager to discover a cavity where he can observe the underground fauna. In the meantime, he is collecting the soil and surface fauna with his Indonesian colleagues.

(translated by Evelyne Viloteau, L2 SVC–Life & Earth Sciences–UM2, France)