Island adventurer: Alfred Russel Wallace and the quest for the origin of species

June 15, 2017

In honour of the centenary of the great Victorian naturalist, Alfred Russel Wallace, John van Wyhe wrote and curated the Wallace exhibition at Science Centre Singapore, co-sponsored by the Faculty of Science, NUS. This animated biography of Wallace was made for the exhibition.

The opening title sound recording of the song of Wallace's standard wing bird of paradise was recorded on Halmahera by John van Wyhe.

The Tembusu (Fagraea fragrans) is a large evergreen tree in the family Gentianaceae. It is native to Southeast Asia. Its trunk is dark brown, with deeply fissured bark, looking somewhat like a bittergourd. It grows in an irregular shape from 10 to 25m high. Its leaves are light green and oval in shape. Its yellowish flowers have a distinct fragrance and the fruits of the tree are bitter tasting red berries, which are eaten by birds and fruit bats.