Oryza rufipogon, Tram Chim National Park of Dong Thap Muoi, Mien Tay, Vietnam

93th place in Biotope Aquarium Design Contest 2019

Vietnam. Pham Duc Manh

Volume: 175 L
Dimensions: 90x69x28 cm
List of fishes: Macropodus opercularis
List of plants: Oryza rufipogon
Description of decorations: Dried leaves, Melaleuca Driftwood, Oryza rufipogon… materials from Tram Chim National Park of Dong Thap Muoi
Description of equipment: External filter Eheim , Led 20W – 8000K
Water parameters: Temperature is 28°C, pH is 6.6.
Additional info: N/A


Description of the area surrounding the biotope: Rice production and export play an important role in Vietnam’s socio-economic development. And the origin of rice is Oryza rufipogon. Oryza rufipogon. It grows much in the Tram Chim National Park.
Tram Chim National Park of Dong Thap Muoi, Tam Nong district, Dong Thap province, in the Mekong Delta. The plain of reeds was seasonally flooded with standing water for continuous periods of up to seven months per year. Since canalization, flood waters drain more rapidly and the national park is flooded for less than six months per year. Water levels in the canals begin to rise in June, at the beginning of the rainy season. Between September and December, the national park is inundated to a depth of 2 to 4 m, with a peak in October. The park is in the lowest area of the Mekong River water logged plain submerged and in the centre of Dong Thap Muoi. The climate is similar to that region close to the equator; it has a great deal of rainfall and sunlight. The vegetation of Tram Chim National Park comprises a mixture of seasonally inundated grassland, regenerating Melaleuca forest and open swamp. The seasonally inundated marshes at Tram Chim are the last extensive remnant of the freshwater marshes of the Plain of Reeds. The marsh plant commu-nities form a continuum, closely following the gradient of soil surface elevation andwater permanence.

Description of the underwater landscape of the biotope: On the rain season, as the river passes through lowlands. there are many branches and driftwood in the underwater. Where are home to plant as Oryza rufipogon

Usually the third month of the lunar month begins to grow very much on the wild fields, when the first rains wetting the soil. Where the water rises, the rice plant goes up there.

Around September, the lunar calendar is flowering. After 2-3 weeks, start to ripen. But only nine to two seeds a day. When the rice is ripe, it takes about two weeks. The immense floodwaters want to come here to harvest only the only way is to go by canoe.

Ghost rice seeds are easy to shed, so people cannot cut and bring them back to the dam house, but they have to find a way to shake the rice into the boat.

Description of the parameters of the habitat: Temperature is 28°C, pH varies from 6.3 to 6.8

List of fishes and invertebrates occurring in the nature biotope: Macropodus opercularis

List of plants found in the nature biotope: Oryza rufipogon

Threats to the ecology: In order for these genetic resources to retain its inherent preeminent properties, it is best to maintain that species at the place they are found and to find ways to protect the whole ecosystem. So is the ghost rice.

However, the Mekong Delta is at risk of losing a lot of special species on heavy acid sulphate soils. The reason is that we have been looking for ways to improve acid sulfate soil for agricultural land.

With a dense system of canals aimed at flood drainage, acid removal and alum, the heavy acid sulphate soils have decreased rapidly.

Especially the dry-submerged regime and water quality are no longer in the natural law, so species survive because of their ability to adapt to the soil environment – harsh water has disappeared quickly. The biodiversity of this place is greatly reduced.

This hydrological regime changes physico-chemical properties of topsoil: less acidic soil, shorter drying time … so submerged species have fast growing conditions and dominate natural species, in there is a ghost rice

In Tram Chim National Park ecosystem, ghost rice acts as a key species. They are an important source of food to sustain other species in particularly difficult periods such as deep water or drought.

Ghost roots, stems, leaves, and seeds are a source of food for many species during immense flood waters. Ghost rice seeds in soil are a source of starch for many species to survive in drought. Therefore, when the ghost rice disappears, the ecosystem of this ecosystem will be seriously disturbed.

It is easy to see that the species that rely on rice ghosts during deep or dry water will be reduced in number and gradually disappear first.

Sources of information:

Comments of the members of the jury of Biotope Aquarium Design Contest 2019