ABOVE; Sterculia macrophylla ( Malvaceae) illustration from the Rijks Herbarium via Plantillustrations.org
In the Tree Flora of Sabah and Sarawak, Vol. 7 (2011) Wilkie and Behaman list 20 species of Sterculia for Sabah and Sarawak indicating a possible 30-35 species for Borneo as a whole. Their spectacular scarlet seed pods mean that Sterculias are hard to miss but because they have little economic value either as timber or as food, the ecology of Sterculias is little understood.
Tangisang Burung (Birds Crying): In his classic book the Wayside Trees of Malaya Professor E J H Corner lists a number of trees that the local Malay villagers classified as Tangisang Burung. The birds cry because the spectaular appearance of Sterculia fruit promises much but delivers little or nothing in the way of food !