Steve Happ Photography Ramblings and dissertations

January 27, 2020

Kinabatangan River Satu

Filed under: Birds — Tags: — admin @ 8:08 am

Sungai Kinabatangan One

I caught a minivan to Lahad Datu from Semporna and then another one to Kota Kinabatangan, where I had to wait about three hours for the bus to the Kinabatangan River. When we got there we registered at the Nature Lodge Kinabatangan and then after a short time, hopped in the boat for our first trip up the river. It was raining at first but it soon stopped and the sun came out and we had a lovely time. No birds, but lots of different monkeys.

Bornean Orangutan -  female
Bornean Orangutan (Pongo pygmaeus morio)

This is the Borneo Orangutan. The other orangutans are in Sumatra. They belong to the only genus of great apes native to Asia. Orangutans share about 97% or their DNA with humans. They stay by themselves and do not hang out in groups. This is a female, feeding on some figs.

Proboscis Monkey - female
Proboscis Monkey (Nasalis lavartus) -female

Proboscis Monkeys feed on vegetable matter. They are ruminants, like cows, and have four stomachs.

Proboscis Monkey  - male
Proboscis Monkey (Nasalis lavartus) – male

The male has a big nose which is supposed to impress the ladies. The malay name is Monyet Belanda, or dutch monkey, probably referring to the big red alcoholic noses and fat bellies of the early colonisers.

Proboscis Monkey
Proboscis Monkey (Nasalis lavartus)

This young monkey is angry and telling us to go away.

Pig-tailed Macaque
Pig-tailed Macaque (Macaca nemestrima)

They have a short curly tail, just like a pig.

Silvery Lutung
Silvery Lutung (Trachypithecus cristatus)

I am not quite sure about the proper name yet. I tend to think of them as Langurs. But they do just eat leaves. Also known as the Silver Tipped Langur or Silvered Leaf Monkey. “The silvery lutung (Trachypithecus cristatus), also known as the silvered leaf monkey or the silvery langur, is an Old World monkey. … It has grey-tipped, dark brown or black fur, giving it a uniform silvery appearance. ” (wiki)

Water Monitor
Water Monitor (Varanus salvator)

“The Asian water monitor (Varanus salvator), also called common water monitor, is a large varanid lizard native to South and Southeast Asia. It is one of the most common monitor lizards in Asia, ranging from Sri Lanka and coastal northeast India to Indochina, Malay Peninsula, and Indonesian islands where it lives close to water.” (wiki)

Wrin kled Hornbill
Wrinkled Hornbill (Aceros corrugatus)

Not many birds, so I have to put this one last, even though it is a tick. doh!

Sungai Kinabatangan animal list

Proboscis Monkey (Nasalis lavartus)
Bornean Orangutan (Pongo pygmaeus morio)
Silvery Lutung (Trachypithecus cristatus)
Long-tailed Macaque (Macaca fascicularis)
Pig-tailed Macaque (Macaca nemestrima)
Water Monitor (Varanus salvator )

Wrinkled Hornbill (Aceros corrugatus)
Purple Heron
Oriental Darter



  1. So you are back in Kinabatang. Staying at the same lodge as last time? Lovely place. I want to go back!
    Hope you’ll see the elephants again.

    Stay safe!

    Comment by Gunilla — January 27, 2020 @ 5:21 pm

  2. yes i stayed at the same lodge. No elephants but some orangutans. and plenty of hornbills.


    Comment by admin — January 28, 2020 @ 1:42 am

  3. Great pictures! There’s quite a difference seeing the animals from the boat and even through binoculars, and then seeing them so clearly in a close-up. Hope you had a good time at the lodge. I’m now back in Kota Kinabalu, and plan on going snorkeling tomorrow.

    Comment by Kris who shared the dorm with you — January 28, 2020 @ 12:10 pm

  4. hello kris,

    thanks for the comment. I am now in Sandakan, and am going to sepilok today. Hope you have fun snorkelling.


    Comment by admin — January 28, 2020 @ 11:45 pm

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