Page:EB1911 - Volume 05.djvu/622

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CELEBES

north coast, Palos and Pare-Pare on the west, and Kendari or Vosmaer on the east. Of the numerous considerable islands which lie north-east, east and south of Celebes (those off the west coast are few and small), the chief are prolongations of the four great peninsulas—the Sangir and Talaut islands off the north-east, the Banggai and Sula off the east, Wuna and Buton off the south-east, and Saleyer off the south. Including the adjacent islands, the area of Celebes is estimated at 77,855 sq. m., and the population at 2,000,000; without them the area is 69,255 sq. m. and the population 1,250,000.

The scenery in Celebes is most varied and picturesque. “Nowhere in the archipelago,” wrote A. R. Wallace, “have I seen such gorges, chasms and precipices as abound in the district of Maros” (in the southern peninsula); “in many parts there are vertical or even overhanging precipices five or six hundred feet high, yet completely clothed with a tapestry of vegetation.” Much of the country, especially round the Gulf of Tolo, is covered with primeval forests and thickets, traversed by scarcely perceptible paths, or broken with a few clearings and villages. A considerable part of the island has been little explored, but the general character seems to be mountainous. Well-defined ranges prolong themselves through each of the peninsulas, rising in many places to a considerable elevation. Naturally there are no great river-basins or extensive plains, but one of the features of the island is the frequent occurrence, not only along the coasts, but at various heights inland, of beautiful stretches of level ground often covered with the richest pastures. Minahassa, the north-eastern extremity, consists of a plateau divided into sections by volcanoes (Klabat, 6620 ft., being the highest). Sulphur springs occur here. In the west of the northern peninsula the interior consists in part of plateaus of considerable extent enclosed by the coast ranges. Near Lake Posso, in the centre of the island, the mountains are higher; the Tampiko massif has a height of nearly 5000 ft., the chains south and west of the lake have a general altitude of about 5450 ft., with peaks still loftier. In the southern peninsula two chains stretch parallel with the west and east coasts; the former is the higher, with a general altitude of 3200 ft. In the south it joins the Peak of Bonthain, or Lompo-battang, a great volcanic mass 10,088 ft. high. In the east central part of the island the mountain Koruve exceeds 10,000 ft., and is supposed to be the highest in the island. An alluvial coast plain, 7 to 9 m. wide, stretches along the foot of the western chain, and between the two chains is the basin of the Walannaë river, draining northward into Lake Tempe. Little is known of the orography of the eastern peninsula. At the base of the south-eastern there is another large lake, Tovieti. In this peninsula there are parallel ranges on the east and west flanks. The trench between them is partly occupied by the vast swamp of Lake Opa.

The rivers of the narrow mountainous peninsulas form many rapids and cataracts; as the Tondano, draining the lake of the same name to the north-west coast of Minahassa at Menado; the Rano-i-Apo, flowing over the plateau of Mongondo to the Gulf of Amurang; the Poigar, issuing from a little-known lake of that plateau; the Lombagin, traversing narrow cañons; and the river of Boni, which has its outfall in the plain of Gorontalo, near the mouth of the Bolango or Tapa, the latter connected by a canal with the Lake of Limbotto. All these rivers are navigable by praus or rafts for only a few miles above the mouth. In central Celebes, the Kodina flows into Lake Posso, and the Kalaëna discharges to the Gulf of Boni; the Posso, navigable by blottos (canoes formed of hollowed tree-trunks), is the only river flowing from the lake to the Gulf of Tomini. The rivers of the southern peninsula, owing to the relief of the surface, are navigable to a somewhat greater extent. The Walannaë flows into Lake Tempe, and, continued by the Jenrana (Tienrana), which discharges into the Gulf of Boni, is navigable for small boats; the Sadang, with many affluents, flows to the west coast, and is navigable by sanpans. The Jenemaja is a broad river, navigable far from the mouth. The coasts of Celebes are often fertile and well populated; but, as shown by the marine charts, many sand, mud and stone banks lie near the shore, and consequently there are few accessible or natural ports or good roadsteads.

Geology.—The geological observations on Celebes are too scattered to reveal its structure. The greater part of the island seems to be formed of gneiss and other crystalline rocks. These are overlaid by conglomerates, limestones and clay slates of very doubtful age, the most interesting being a radiolarian clay which occurs on the south side of the Matinang Mountains, at the north end of Lake Posso, &c.; it may correspond with the radiolarian cherts of Borneo. Tertiary beds are found, especially near the coast. The Eocene includes a series of sandstones and marls with lignite, and these are overlaid by nummulite limestones. The Miocene contains an Orbitoides limestone. Intrusive and volcanic rocks of great variety and of various ages occur. Peridotite and gabbro form much of the eastern peninsula (Banggai). Leucite and nepheline rocks have been found in various parts of the island, especially in the south-west. In Minahassa, at the northern extremity, there is a large area of tuffs and agglomerates consisting chiefly of augite andesite, and in this area there are many recent volcanic cones. Eruptions still take place at intervals, but the volcanoes for the most part seem to have reached the solfataric stage.

Climate.—The climate of the island, everywhere accessible to the influence of the sea, is maritime-tropical, the temperature ranging generally between 77° and 80° F., the extremes being about 90° and 70° F., only on the higher mountains falling during the night to 54° or 55° F. The rainfall in the northern peninsula (north of the equator) differs from that of the southern; the former has rains (not caused by the monsoon), and of smaller amount, 102 in. annually; the latter has a greater rainfall, 157 in., brought by the north-western monsoon, and of which the west coast receives a much larger share than the east.

Fauna and Flora.—In spite of its situation in the centre of the archipelago, Celebes possesses a fauna of a very distinctive kind. The number of species is small, but in many cases they are peculiar to the island. Of land birds, for example, about 160 species are known, and of these not less than about 90 are peculiar, the majority of the remainder being Asiatic in distinction from Australian. Mammals are few in species, but remarkable, especially Macacus niger, an ape found nowhere else but in Bachian; Anoa depressicornis, a small ox-like quadruped which inhabits the mountainous districts; and the babirusa or pig-deer of the Malays. Some of the animals are probably descendants of specimens introduced by man; others are allied in species, but not identical, with mammals of Java and Borneo; others again, including the three just mentioned, are wholly or practically confined to Celebes. There are no large beasts of prey, and neither the elephant, the rhinoceros nor the tapir is represented. Wild-buffaloes, swine and goats are pretty common; and most of the usual domestic animals are kept. The horses are in high repute in the archipelago; formerly about 700 were yearly exported to Java, but the supply has considerably diminished.

The same peculiarity of species holds in regard to the insects of the Celebes (so far as they are known) as to the mammals and birds. Out of 118 species of butterflies, belonging to four important classes, no fewer than 86 are peculiar; while among the rose-chafers or Cetoniinae the same is the case in 19 out of 30. Equally remarkable with this presence of peculiar species is the absence of many kinds that are common in the rest of the archipelago; and these facts have been considered to indicate connexion with a larger land-mass at a very distant geological epoch, and the subsequent continuous isolation of Celebes. This view, however, has been controverted. It is held that in the Miocene and Pliocene periods there were land connexions with the Philippines, Java and the Moluccas, and through the last with Australasian lands to the east and south-east. Migration of species took place along these lines in both directions. Those immigrants which remained in what is now Celebes may have developed new species. Moreover, while Celebes has species which are peculiar to itself and one other of the islands just mentioned, it has none which it shares exclusively with Borneo, and thus the importance of the Macassar Strait as a biological division is indicated.

Vegetation is extremely rich; but there are fewer large trees than in the other islands of the archipelago. Of plants that