Jakarta (Indonesia Window) – For centuries Indonesia’s biodiversity has attracted a number of experts and academics from various countries in the world, including a zoologist (animal expert) from Germany, Heinrich Boie.
Heinrich Boie who was born in Meldorf, Holstein, Germany in 1794 studied law in Kiel and Göttingen.
While studying at the university he was interested in natural history while attending Johann Friedrich Blumenbach and Friedrich Tiedemann lectures.
He was later appointed as assistant to Coenraad Jacob Temminck in Leiden, the Netherlands.
In 1825 he travelled to Java with Salomon Müller to collect specimens for the museum until he died in Bogor in 1827 due to bile fever.
Heinrich Boie was buried in the Dutch Cemetery in the Bogor Botanical Gardens, West Java.
Together with his brother, Friedrich Boie, Heinrich devoted his life to the field of herpetology (the science of reptiles and amphibians) they described 49 new reptile species and several new amphibian species.
Although he has made important discoveries in the field of herpetology, not many people know that the Bogor Botanical Garden covering an area of 87 hectares is Heinrich Boie’s final resting place.
The German scientist’s tomb, nicknamed Mr. Indonesian Snake, is marked by an old tombstone with a snake symbol on the top.
As a form of respect, the Bogor Botanical Garden in cooperation with the German Embassy painted and installed Heinrich Boie’s gravestone in the Dutch Cemetery Complex, Bogor Botanical Garden, on Monday (20/1), a statement from the Indonesian Institute of Sciences (LIPI) was quoted as saying in Jakarta, Saturday.
A cultural and press staff member at the German Federal Embassy, Marc Seamann, said that he was surprised to learn that a German scientist who is a well-known snake figure in Indonesia was buried in the Bogor Botanical Gardens.
“We hope that Heirich Boie’s track record during conducting research on reptile animals, especially snakes, can be followed up through expeditions or joint research activities between Indonesian reptile researchers and their German counterparts,” he said.
Meanwhile, reptile researcher from the LIPI’s Biology Research Center, Amir Hamidy, supports the restoration of Heinrich Boie’s tomb as a tribute to the dedication of the scientist in reptile research in the country.
“I used a lot of Boie’s research as a reference, like that for my writing about the Java cobra or Naja sputatrix. The snake was described by him, “said Amir.
He added, there are at least 48 species of snakes in the country that have been described by Heinrich Boie.
Reporting by Indonesia Window