Monday, August 20, 2007

Sukau Photo Trip

Sunset at Sukau Kinabtangan River
Click on pic to enlarge:

Lance , Jason and myself just came back from a week trip on a Tour assignment cum photo trip in Sukau Sandakan Sabah. Situated along Lower Kinabatangan River. Its a mighty river 560km long. It is one of the most cencentrated with wild animals in Asia!. We stayed in Tomanggong River Lodge run by Cede Prudente under North Borneo Safari Tour Sdn. Bhd.
It was a fruitful trip and saw lots of animals and super rare animals and animals in action. Please check out foto's below.

Proboscis monkey Harem going to sleep

Alpha male of Proboscis Monkey- Eveready to mate!

Proboscis Monkey is the Prime attraction in Sukau. They are only to be found in Borneo. Most easily found at Sukau and very photo friendly too compare to other parts of Borneo. Many other animals are also found if you are patience enough and hire a right guide or some good animal spotter local guide or boatman. Most animal watching is done in a comfort of sitting in a boat. Boat capacity is 8 person and without canopy to shed you from sun or rain. So therefore don't forget to bring your own raincoat if you are visiting Sukau.

The boat for river cruise equip with eclectic motor for silent cruising

Crocodile is another attractive inhabitant of the river Kinabatangan. Sukau Tomanggong River Lodge is the best place to view this Big 3m long Resident Crocodile name FRANKIE. He would land himself nearby the lodge hoping to get some passing by food. Dogs!

Frankie the Big Croc at STRL

In one of the morning cruise, I spotted a couple of eagle flying up ahead and trying to land just in front of our boat. Then took picture of the sequence on Landing. Awesome!

Then in one of the afternoon cruise we saw a family of small clawed otter by the river bank. This is an unusual sighting of otter in a group. Lucky ha....!

Also a close up of Pig tailed macaque just inches away from us.

Juvenile Pig Tailed Macaque. Photogenic!!

Then at night we went for a night cruise from Sukau to Abai and suddenly when night falls.....
Fire flies starts to glow and it was like Christmas trees along the river near Abai village. 2 hours by small boat from Sukau. it is about the same those found in Klias river.

As we went on cruising a Leopard cat appeared by the river bank and we start shooting - with Camera of course! This Leopard cat is a very rare sight. Another lucky sighting!

A common resident at night - Buffy Fish Owl (Largest owl in Sabah)

Then another close up shot of a Blue Eared kingfisher . They wont fly at night even you are quite close. But not too close.

Then the whether starts to turn bad and we head home. I manage to shoot the cloud with a lightning.Lightning!!


Bornean Ground Cuckoo - Very rare bird of Borneo!

This bird is so so rare and difficult to find and yet alone to be photograph! I was with Lance, Jason and a couple of Italian Tourist on a morning cruise. Then We heard the call. Jason our bird specialist saw it first in the bushes and got very very excited and nervous. He started shouting and tried to call the bird back with his birds calls via Ipod. Then it appeared again very very quickly and ran away. I manage to picture a glimpse of it with a slightly blurred vision. The last foto of this bird was in 2005 by Simon Colenut if not mistaken. It it considered as threathened animal and a very rare bird. Listed in IUCN red list of Threatened species.!

Another surprise was a snake fell out of a tree near the restaurant with a frog on his mouth and it was trying to take it up back on the tree and was swallowing it. I manage to capture it from start to finish. I post just 1 pic for your pleasure. It was a pity to the frog. Snake was happy though! yummy.....!

Our trip ends in Sukau and our assignment is done. However our encounter with the wild has not over. Our our way home back to kk on Sunday night. It was raining heavily and we were near nalapak then I saw a short snake in the middle of the road and almost hit it. I ask Jason to stop and turn back. To our surprise it is still alive and it is a rare Blood Phyton or Short Phyton. We took some picture and make sure he was safe crossing the road.

Short Phyton


horukuru said...

hehehe fantastic and very good writing for the report :p

Jollence Lee said...

Awesome John, Great photos!! looking forward to see more.

Marco said...

Hi John, we are Marco and Cristina, the Italian turist who were with you when you run on the rare Ground Cuckoo (called by us Ground Coconut). Thank yo very much for the great time and experience we had togheter in Sukao. Look forward to meeting you again, hopefully in Danum Valley.

Marco & Cristina

Leslie of said...

Hey John,
Awesome pictures and didn't know you're a blogger dude! I'm proud of you my brother! Hope all is well and I miss all the Wildlife.
Leslie - Atlanta, GA USA

North Borneo - Sabah

North Borneo - Sabah
Photo Trips and Birding Trips