Saturday, January 10, 2009

some places where there is wildlife

lotus growing in the wild (in singapore)

some other untamed places in singapore

not many people are aware that there are wild boars on mainland singapore because very few people have seen them. wild boars tend to be more active between dusk and dawn, so the chances of seeing one in the day is very rare except on the outlying islands of pulau ubin and pulau tekong. with pulau tekong being designated as a military area, the only place where people may meet up with a wild boar is pulau ubin. we saw two wild boars when we made a trip to chek jawa in december last year.

the first time when i saw four or five wild boars on mainland singapore one evening, i had imagined that my eyes were playing tricks on me. i dismissed it, telling myself that they could have been stray dogs. but when i visited 'poison ivy' a few days later and came upon a brochure which made mention of wild boars in the area, i began to think that they were indeed wild boars that i had seen.

as if to confirm it, i saw two huge ones a few weeks later. it had rained earlier and my first sighting was two small ones which quickly disappeared into the undergrowth. i drove on, along the same track, and dimmed my lights because i did not want to scare them away; i wanted to be certain of what i would see. as i rounded a bend, i saw them. they made a quick exit into the bushes.

around the same place, i have also come across four jungle fowls but they do not look like the red ones i saw at sungei buloh. i saw two pairs of the jungle fowls at two different spots. they seemed to be taller than the red jungle fowls but without any tinge of red on their body. they all disappeared before i could whip out my digital camera.

i may also be wrong about the total disappearance of fireflies in singapore. there have been reports of encounter with fireflies, especially by soldiers, at army training areas in lim chu kang and pulau tekong.

this afternoon i was at the sungei buloh wetland reserve and from the main bridge i saw six otters - four adults and two cubs - playing and hunting for food near the mouth of the sungei buloh besar. this is not my first time seeing otters in the wild. i have come across otters twice, both times at the sand-spit near platform 1 of the wetland reserve.


nah said...

In the wilderness of this little red dot, lies a very secluded spot in the Mandai reservoir where this aggressive carnivore lurks below the tranquil surface of the water. This is the spot where I landed a 7kg giant toman or snakehead using two hooks and a live bait. This fish is a very fierce predator in the wild. I once witnessed a small monkey drinking water by clinging onto a branch which dipped into the water, disappeared within seconds.
In recent years, snakeheads grabbed headlines when introduced specimens bred and caused havoc in Maryland in the United States. US media dubbed them 'Franken-fish' because of their hardiness and ability to get from pond to pond by crawling for short distances on land.

Lam Chun See said...

Just the other day, I went for trekking at Bt Timah Hill and saw two huge (and noisy) hornbills in the carpark. My friend told me they were 'resident' birds. During my visit to Kuching last month, the locals told me you had to go deep into the jungle to see hornbills.

BTW, have you read my article about the Blue-crowned Hanging Parrots that came visiting to my backyard. I was told by YC Wee of Bird Ecology Study Group that I was fortunate becos they were quite rare.

yg said...

chun see, ya, i read about the parrots which visited you sometime ago. if you go to pangkor island in west malaysia, you can see hornbills all over the place.

yg said...

mr nah, no need to go jungle trekking to catch tomans. i can take you to this fish farm in lim chu kang. they have many tanks of tomans.

Lam Chun See said...

During my walks in Macritchie, I have seen tomans near the boardwalk a couple of times. I have also seen one at the stream near Venus Drive.

nah said...

I am more interested in the giant tomans with mouth big enough to gobble up a baby monkey. This is an esteemed game fish, for it is a strong fighter when hooked. The juveniles gather into a tight shoal and can be seen in ponds and the banks of reservoirs. What I enjoyed most, besides the action-packed fishing, is the occasional sight of a giant monitor lizard passing by and the wilderness of the jungle. On one occasion, a baby eagle in flight, snatched away the live bait at the end of my line after I had cast it out into air. Interestingly, in the month of august, during breeding time, both males and females can be seen amongst the vegetation in the area in shallow water.

yg said...

chun see and nah, tomans are quite common in ponds, reservoirs and streams. i have seen fairly big ones during my walk along the boardwalks of macritchie. i have also seen schools of them (yes, the juveniles) at the upper peirce reservoir.