Loagan Bunut National Park Day Trip
Loagan Bunut National Park Day Trip
Loagan Bunut, which centers around Sarawak's largest natural lake, is one of the most unusual aquatic ecosystems in Malaysia. The lake normally covers an area of approximately 65 hectares. However when the water level in the adjacent Tinjar river is low, the shallow lake can drain completely, leaving a huge expanse of dried and cracked mud. This normally occurs two to four times a year, in February and in late May or early June/July.
This unique cycle of flood and drought has created a remarkable food chain which supports a large variety of aquatic and terrestrial animals. As the lake dries up, many aquatic creatures escape into the Bunut river, which connects the lake to the Tinjar and Baram river. Nevertheless many remain behind and huge flocks of wading birds, primarily egrets, gorge themselves on the fish, frogs and shrimps that are trapped in shallow pools. When the lake is completely dry, grasses and herbs sprout from the mud, and are eaten by the larvae of insects that have laid their eggs in the mud. When the rains start again and the lake begins to fill up, returning fish feed on the larvae, breed in the lake, and the whole cycle begins again.
The wading birds are not the only ones to take advantage of low water levels to find abundant food. The local Berawan fishermen have developed a unique method of catching fish as they enter and leave the lake. This technique, known as Selambau, is only found at Loagan Bunut and involves the use of huge scoop nets to catch migrating fish. The scoop nets are mounted on large rafts, which can be rotated to suit the direction of the water flow, and fish are literally scooped out of the water as they enter or leave the lake. The captured fish are kept alive in submerged bamboo cages, called Kurungan, until they can be transported to market.
The remaining parkland, which covers approximately 100 sq km, is covered with a variety of forest types, ranging from mixed peatswamp forest with huge stilt-rooted trees at the water's edge, to towering Alam forest with a canopy height of over 60 m.
The park is home to a considerable variety of birds; during the dry spells in February and May-June, darters, egrets, herons, bitterns, storks and broadbill arrive in huge numbers to feed on the trapped fish, whilst eagles, swallows, malkohas, stork-billed kingfishers, magpies, robins, doves, bulbuls, racket-tailed drongos, pied hornbills and kites can be seen all year round. Mammals found in the park include barking deer, bearded pigs, sambar deer, long-tail macaques, black banded langurs, lesser mouse deer, small-tooth palm civets, giant squirrels, provosts squirrels and Bornean gibbons. Reptiles and amphibians include many species of frogs and small lizards, dog-headed water snakes, a variety of tree snakes, and the occasional estuarine crocodile. There are also unconfirmed reports of false gavial crocodiles occurring in the lake.
Duration : 8 hours
Depart Time : 6:30 am / 10:30 am
Meet at hotel lobby and proceed for trip to Loagan Bunut National Park , that takes about two and a half hours from Miri City. Visit includes a stop at a small town Beluru, and the Berawan's longhouse. Upon arrival at Loagan Bunut National Park, we take a boat trip to explore the lake and the surrounding forest to appreciate the magnificent scenery. The narrow longboats can penetrate some distance into the forest, offering an excellent close-up view of huge stilted tree roots and the chance to see monkeys and squirrels. Witness The Selambau scoop nets that are one of Loagan Bunut's most fascinating attractions, which can also be visited during the boat ride. During the fish migration periods you may watch the local fishermen at work. At other times of the year you are likely to see local fishermen using more conventional fishing methods, such as casting nets and pole nets, to harvest the lake's abundant supply of fish. Our visit also include the ancient Berawan burial platform, or Klirieng, which rears out of the waters of the lake, supported by two mighty Borneo ironwood columns. After tour, transfer back to hotel. Lunch is included at local canteen.
- 1 Lunch
- Entrance fee, guide fee
- All transfers & tours as stated in the package (Seat in Coach)
- Tipping, Optional tours, Travel insurance
- Insect repellent , Sunscreen, Raincoat, Own drinking bottle and First aid kit.