Friday, April 30, 2010

Bako: Where Nature Is Right In Your Face

Bako is Sarawak's oldest national park, and is located at the tip of the Muara Tebas peninsula. The park was gazetted as a nature reserve in 1957, and is arguably the best place to experience wildlife. Accommodations are very basic and can be very uncomfortable due to the high humidity. However, we had the best wildlife experience right at our door steps. The chalet block that we were housed is built on swampy land with puddles of stagnant water. As you may have guessed, the area is also a heaven for mosquitoes but the wildlife around us was amazing.
We had two Wagler’s Pit Vipers as neighbors and no one battered an eye at the presences of the park’s only venomous snake. The two snakes were left unmolested (no anyone attempt to lop their heads off and mince them up). I spent two days photographing the male as he was in a better position. The juvenile female was a tad small and in a harder location.
Imagine my shock coming face to face for the first time with the largest wild pig I have ever seen. The female Bornean Bearded Pig and her young ones emerged from the bush in the evening for a drink of water. I spent the next day and a half looking out for the pigs but I never got my shot at the large female. Instead, a large male came out to drink while we were waiting for the White-bellied Woodpecker and I got my bearded pig portrait.
Just like Periyar, the Silvered Langurs came right up to where the forestry office and spent a good part of the morning foraging in the trees.
Flying Lemur
A mother and baby were also sighted near the chalet and as usual the mother flying lemur slowly maneuvered around the tree to the attention got too much.
The experience that we had, left me wanting more. I can't wait to head back again. Should you want encounters of the close kind, Bako is a great place to experience wildlife at their best.

No comments: