Night Safaris  in Tabin Wildlife Reserve

The tropical forest really comes to life at night. The old saying about only “mad dogs and Englishmen” going out in the noon-day sun certainly applies to most jungle animals. Tabin Wildlife S/B operates night safaris during which visitors are transported by 4WD vehicle along the drivable trails, including roads that border along neighbouring plantations.

The interface between plantation and jungle can be a busy place as nocturnal food-seekers move back and forth. These include porcupines (below) and tarsiers (right). By using spot lights and headlights or by making use of bright moonlight the alert observer can see a surprising number of animals.

As you drive along jungle tracks the terrestrial animals most likely to been seen along the road include wild pigs, deer, porcupines, small jungle cats and civet cats, whose hooked tails can sometimes be seen dangling below branches. Sometimes elephants or clouded leopards may be seen. The pigs have a ghostly white appearance when illuminated with a spotlight and they usually run for is you approach too closely. Sometimes the cats manifest their fabled curiosity and allow themselves to be approached closely and photographed (e.g. below, right by Ms. Riine Hynniene).
Nocturnal birds and volant mammals such as bats, flying squirrels and flying lemurs are a prominent feature of the jungle at night.

 The squirrels and lemurs can sometimes be seen as they sit on high branches waiting to leap into the air and the bats are constantly swooping through the air, even if they are difficult to see. Borneo is home to 92 species from eight families of bats and at least 15 have been listed in Tabin.

Of course there is an abundance of nocturnal insects, reptiles and amphibians.

Nocturnal frog hunting can be an amusing and rewarding way to spend any damp evening.