12 May 2010

Kota Kinabalu Highlights - Lok Kawi Wildlife Park

Wildlife and nature at your door step. Lok Kawi Wildlife Park is the latest wildlife park that opened in February 2007. The park is about 15 - 25kms, about 30 minutes drive from the city centre. It provides visitors the opportunitites to see some of the animals commonly found in the regions. There is an admission fee but be prepared to pay more if you are an international visitor.

One of the most well known and endangered species to the region, that is also a crowd attraction to the park is the Tiger, "Harimau" in the local language, Malay. Tigers sleeps most of the day, but watch out for them in the night, should you find yourself wandering in the jungle. They are known as the "Lord of the Jungle" for a reason.

Another favourite is the Orang Utan. They are highly intelligent apes and can be found wild on the islands of Borneo and Sumatra. The name "Orang Utan" means "Man of the forest" in Malay. They are said to have three times the strength of a man. You can see one in action at the Amphitheatre along with other trained birds, animals and snakes doing their part in a show.

The Proboscis Monkey is a new one for me. I have never known that such monkeys ever existed with so large a nose. The Proboscis Monkey gets it name from its large pendulous nose. The females have smaller upturned noses but the noses of the males are so large that they hang down over their mouths.

Another favourite are the elephants. The Bornean elephant is slightly smaller and have smaller ears than its African cousin. Best time to see them is at the allotted feeding time. They are most active then. Also you get to feed them sweet potatoes or rather throw at them. There is a gap between the elephants and the wall separating them from the tourists, you.

My favourite however, are the Otters. They are active, lively social creatures. It was great fun to see them swim and play.

There is a huge aviary but it can be hard sometimes to spot the birds, large or small. There are also black squirrels in it too.

Besides the Sun Bear, Gibbon monkey and the few birds from the aviary posted above, there are many others not included, such as the Civet, Clouded Leopard, Sumatran Rhinoceros, Javan Dear, Barking Dear, Miniature horses and yes, even reptiles. Some are difficult to take a photo of due to poor lightings in their habitat, distance from me or just my lack of photographic skills.

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