Yellow Meranti tree in Tawau Hill
Researchers from Cambridge University announced they had discovered the lofty Yellow Meranti tree (Shorea faguetiana) in a remote part of Malaysia. A giant ‘Minecraft tree’ measuring 294 feet (89.5m) has been declared the tallest tree in the Tropics by British scientists.
The tree – commonly known as one of the trees that can be built by players of the popular Minecraft computer game – is taller than 20 London double decker buses put end to end.
Dr David Coomes, lead researcher at Cambridge’s department of plant sciences, said: “Interestingly, there may be more of this tree in cyberspace than in the world.”
He added: “Its a smidgen taller than the record, which makes it quite possibly the tallest tree recorded in the Tropics.”
The hulking Yellow Meranti is rooted on a slope which means downhill it’s 288 feet (91m) but uphill it’s 298 feet (88m) giving – giving an average of 294 feet (89.5m).
- Britain’s tallest Christmas tree being used for a very special purpose
It beats the previous record holder from a tree of the same species which is 284 feet (88.3m) tall.
That tree can found in the Tawau Hills National Park in Malaysia.
Measuring the giant was tricky, an expert had to climb the tree with a tape measure to discover it was as tall as 65 people standing on one and other – just short of Big Ben.
Dr Coomes said: “Trees in temperate regions, like the giant redwoods can grow up to 30m taller; yet around 90m seems to be the limit in the Tropics.
“No-one knows why this should be the case.”
Researchers discovered the tree with some high-tech kit.
A laser strapped to the undercarriage of plane was used to create a 3D map of the forest bellow.
- You having a giraffe? Elephant resembles world’s tallest animal as he reaches for food in tree
Dr Coomes said: “The discovery of this particular tree comes at a critical moment because, set against a backdrop of decades of forest loss, the Sabah government has decided to protect and restore a huge tract of heavily logged forest just to the east Maliau Basin.
“It’s exciting to know that these iconic giants of the forest are alive and well so close to this major project.”
The world’s tallest tree is a Redwood discovered in California which measures 379.7 feet (115.7 m) tall.