Back To Nature: Matang Wildlife Sanctuary & Park

Friday. 26th October 2012

First of all, I’d like to wish all my Muslim side of the family and friends Selamat Hari Raya Aidiladha. Sincere apologize for not able to come visiting you guys during the festive day. However, I wish you all great health and prosperous life all year round. May the festive joy be with you always.

I have to say, there are a lot of places around Sarawak that I haven’t been to. This is among the downside when being away on other people’s places for a very long years. By the time you got home, many things have changed. In an attempt to recollect all those missing bits and pieces, I try to spend some times exploring my own backyard (Kuching) and discover what I’ve been missing all these years. Its really great to have some good friends who are willing to travel along and get crazy sometimes to check out happenings in Kuching. This time around, a friend and I decided to check out Matang Wildlife center.

When speaking about Matang Wildlife Center, most of us will automatically think about the Orangutans. Frankly for me, I have no idea what to think of since I’ve never been there before. When I asked my friend the other day, why do he wants to go for an outing to Matang Wildlife? He answered, “I just want to feel that feeling when you’re back in the urban and jungle with those animals.” Fair enough. The fact that we both are travelers since our young age and been away for too long, I guess this is among the way where you can reminisce those old days.

When we got to Matang Wildlife, it was past noon time. Our initial plan was to go in the morning but there were a few hickups. There was a family emergency and Wood had to postponed our morning trip. At the same time I had a couple of trouble myself, my camera’s part were scattered across the planet and I have to gather them 1 by 1. Unfortunately, I’m unable to get ahold of my memory card. I was lucky since Wood brought his spare memory card.

Buaya Tembaga. Literally translated as the Bronze Croc

Well, crocodiles are a common sight around Sarawak. So, you’ll encounter some of them once in a while when you live along the Sarawak river. For Wood and I, crocodiles are part of the community.

Wooden walkway

Gravel path

After passing by the crocodile’s area, we came to the deer’s sanctuary. The caging are was a little bit too far from the main walkway. Owh, beware not to feed these animals. Although they seems to be quite tame from inside the fenced area, but they can get rough when provoked by food or irrational behavior.

Deary Deer

I’m a little surprised to find only three of these deer were seen here. Was wondering where the others are. Unable to spot more then three in that caging area, Wood and I move ahead to look for other animals. That’s when we came across the Bearcat and the Leopard.

This lonely Leopard was seen playing alone and came to us seeking attention.

This lonely Bearcat caught my attention when it starts to meow and howl when we pass by its cage. Look at that sorrow expression.

After a few minutes accompanying both the Leopard and the Bearcat, we then move to a nearby Porcupine’s cage. This time the crowd seems a bit merrier then the previous cages (except for the crocodile’s).

1 of 6 Porcupine which were seen playing around in the park

During our time walking about and checking the animals in the park, we also got the chance to see some foreigners in training and volunteers taking care of the animals first hand. This time around, the volunteers are a bunch of Japanese youngsters. Its a good effort to learn how to take care and get in person with the animals here, especially the Orangutans.

Despite famous for Orangutan, we were a little bit out of luck that day because during the time we went visiting, the Orangutans were called in for early dinner a.k.a feeding time. So, none of them were left in the cage to entertain the visitors. Same goes to the Sunbear. Those left were the birds, namely the Hornbills, Eagles, Owls. Some Wild Cats and the annoying monkeys. I still remember 1 of the monkey keep on throwing something at Wood trying to get his attention. I guess the monkey is really attracted to Wood. LOL!

Besides becoming the sanctuary for these animals, Matang Wildlife Center also preserve some wild floras too. If you’re lucky enough, you might come across some Rafflesias.

Thorny flora

We end our visit around 5pm when the sky starts to drop its raining seeds. How should I conclude this? To be frank, the visit actually makes me sad. When thinking about the park itself, I think there are more need to be done. In term of cleanliness, I really appreciate the effort of the staffs and visitor to make it clean as it should. However in term of facilities, it needs a new touch. Some of those seasoned cages makes the animal look so pitiful.

Hearing the slow howl & growl of the animals in this park especially the Bearcat, I actually pitied them. These animal needs something more then just shelter and food. They need more care and attention. I’m saying this not because I want them to run free in the wild, run as free as they can be in their natural habitat but in the end….were shot dead by hunters and locals for their exotic values. I’m saying this because I want more people to come here and care for these animals. It doesn’t matter if you just come to visit with your family. Perhaps your company or organization is generous enough to adopt one of these animals to take care.

Visiting and adopting these animals will indirectly help this park to generate enough resources to grow further and enhance the existing facilities while taking good care of the sheltered animals. Apart from that, you can apply to be a volunteer here. Whether you volunteer to get close to the animals or assist at the Vet center taking care of the sick and needed. I’m pretty sure the park will appreciate the  effort.

Before I pen down on this entry, I just want to say…

No gate too shut…



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