head img  
NTU Taiwan University img


Nature's Wild Fun - The Floating Island in Drunken Moon lake and the Sawdust Trail in Black Forest Create Unique Ecological Landscapes for NTU Campus

Have you noticed yet? What was originally a dull watery surface in the Drunken Moon Lake now appears a verdant floating island!! And in the Black Forest also emerges a somewhat different walking trail: no longer paved with bricks and cements, but with woodblocks and sawdust. These seemingly simple and natural facilities differ from the other orthodox facilities seen around campus. Their presence spells special significance for NTU!!

Completed on January 6th, the ecological floating island was donated by the Hsi-Liu Environmental Greening Foundation and constructed by the Taiwan Endemic Plant Organization. When aquatic plants flourish in a lakes or pond under natural environment, over a long period of time the body of plants will grow toward the surface of water and extend outwards, forming a large sized porous plantation. Later on, because the portion of the plantation that connects to the land either dies or becomes fractured, the plantation thus becomes a floating island, which, accumulated through a long period of time, even evolves into a floating small forest above the surface of water.

The floating island in the Drunken Moon Lake uses bamboo poles to make a bamboo raft, on which are paved coconut fiber blanket and mud from the swamp , its total surface area is around 22.68 square meters. 18 different kinds of common aquatic plants of Taiwan are planted on top of this island, which provide a safe and private haven for wild geese, ducks, fish and all kinds of amphibians. Through the metabolism of these plants, the mineral elements in the water are absorbed. As a result, the amount of dissolved oxygen in the water is increased and the decomposition of organic elements is enhanced. Moreover, the chemical oxygen demand in the water is reduced, and the water quality is purified. As the plants on the floating island change their outlook with the seasons, the landscape of the Drunken Moon Lake thus becomes more diversified, and the bio-resources also become more abundant.

If you want to have more information about the floating island in the Drunken Moon Lake, you are welcome to download complete introduction from the official website:
Website of the Office of General Affairs:

On the other hand, as the temporary walking trail in the Black Forest has become increasingly dilapidated, in order to safeguard pedestrians' safety, the Division of General Services and the Division of Maintenance & Construction of the Office of General Affairs worked together in trying to pave an ecological trail which befits the "nature, and wild fun" features of the Black Forest. So, the staff of the Office of General Affairs shredded the cement blocks and asphalt materials of the old trail, had them transported and dumped, and replaced them with a new curb made of cedar trees pillars, and a surface made of sawdust obtained from crushed pruned tree branches for about 5 centimeters in thickness.

In the initial stage, the sawdust trail has good water permeability. When the woods decompose, they become natural organic fertilizers for the soil. However, as the woods tend to thin out with the impact of rainwater or become naturally decomposed, in the future we will need to replenish the sawdust to keep the trail in shape. The advantages of so doing are to increase the elasticity of the trail and to recycle the campus resources. As the sawdust have very good friction coefficients, so they carry very good anti-slip effects, no matter whether they are in dry or wet state. Therefore, the sawdust trail can accommodate pedestrians walking above easily.

The feeling of softness you get when you step on the sawdust walking trail is a fresh experience on campus. However, in order to protect yourself, you should refrain from stepping on the sawdust trail barefooted, otherwise your feet might be stabbed by sharp wood fiber.

If we don't tell you, you may not know that as early as 2005, the pruned branches and the fallen foliage in our campus had been made into fertilizers by the NTU Farm and transported back to the campus to improve the quality of the soil and to help the trees grow. The pruned branches are now made into filler materials for the sawdust walking trail, creating a unique campus landscape.

The ecological floating island and the sawdust walking trail are new initiatives for the NTU campus. Their durability, practicality, and their impact on the environment need further observation. We believe that these two new facilities spell a viable direction for the development of the NTU campus. We invite you to join our efforts in improving the quality of our environment. If you have any suggestions, please do not hesitate to share with us.

Chinese version