Rainforests contain more than half of the planet’s animal and plant species, and support the livelihoods of over one billion people. They also play a critical role in stabilising the earth’s climate and atmosphere and maintaining the water cycle — massive global issues that impact all of us (SEARRP, 2022).

Our brand ambassador at Arbortec Forestwear, Unding Jami is part of the South East Asia Rainforest Research Partnership, who conduct the most impactful rainforest research in the world. We asked him a few questions about his journey so far. 

 Arbortec Forestwear Brand ambassador climbing a tree

1. You started off in the industry as a Canopy Research Assistant and now you are the Field Manager at SAFE project for the South East Asia Rainforest Research Partnership (SEARRP). What’s the biggest lesson you’ve learnt from these ongoing projects and do you have a favourite? 

Since I started working with SEARRP, I've slowly understood why the rainforest is important to keep safe as well as its wildlife, for everyone and for our future generations.

My favourite projects are anything related to canopy study, hanging with rope and spending time in the canopies. For me all of the research conducted with SEARRP has inspired me to actively share the good things about wildlife in the rainforest. 

 2. What is the most interesting piece of scientific research you have discovered on your journey?

All of the research I have assisted with has been very interesting because of the diversity of each task, and I have learnt many different things. The most interesting piece of research that I have worked on is when we measured the tallest tropical tree in the Danum Valley conservation area on the island of Borneo. The tree is very tall and unique. 

3. What is the tallest and type of tree you have climbed where you work in the tropical rainforest?

The tallest tropical tree I have climbed is 100.08m and is called the Shorea faguetiana (dipterocarpaceae) family - a height that’s more than five bowling lanes stacked end to end. 

This tree lives in a rainforest in Sabah, Malaysian Borneo. It’s so high-reaching, scientists have named it ‘’Menara’’, the Malay word for ‘’tower’’. 


Tallest tropical tree 100.08m Shorea faguetiana in Borneo

4. What would be your main piece of advice for anyone wanting to get into the same industry as you?

Do not be afraid to face the challenge, if you want to work as a climber or anything related to trees and ropes. The industry is very big, just remember to always be safe, find the right instructor to teach you. Stay humble with the skills that you have and never stop learning even if you know you are on the top level of industry. The last very important thing, always ask someone if you are not sure what you are doing.

5. To date, who has influenced you on your chosen career path and inspired you the most? 

I have met Prince William/Kate, Sir David Attenborough, Dame Judi Dench and many inspirational people when they came to Danum Valley in Borneo. For me they almost have the same character. They are all nice people, and extremely humble.

6. Do you have a favourite item of clothing from Arbortec Forestwear when working in the rainforest and why? 

For me, all the products from Arbortec are the best and help me with my work in the rainforest. I cannot choose one, all of them are just the best. Just one thing to add, bright colours in the rainforest attract the wildlife. Just recently we had an orangutan damage our bright orange cobra bag. 

I also like the KAYO Chainsaw Boot in lime, which is awesome with multiple uses. I've also been using the Ascent Pro climbing boot for more than 2 years, it's a great climbing boot and grips well on branches when up the tree. 

Browse our chainsaw boot collection here. 

If you want to learn more about the world class scientific research conducted by SEARRP, you can access the website here: https://www.searrp.org/