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Flora and Fauna
Over 1800 species of plant have so far been identified,
including nine species of pitcher plant and at least
80 kinds of orchid, several of which are new records
for Sabah and also the bio-symbiotic Ant plants.
The Maliau conservation area contains about 74 dipterocarp
species. Dipterocarp forest is found mostly on the
Basin’s outer flanks and in the interior valley
bottoms, and is rich in fruit trees.
The orchids are especially diverse and accessible in the
heath and short-heath forest plateau. It was noted
that the greatest flowering of orchids there was in
There are also always rhododendrons flowering in the heath
forest, the commonest probably being R. bomeense, R.
durionifolium, and R. javanicum, and their various
Nepenthes can be seen at the heath forest. About 9 species
can be found at the Maliau conservation area. These
include Nepenthes cf. mirabiles, N. gracilis, N.
hirsuta, N. lowii, N. reinwardtiana, N. stenophylla,
N. tentaculata, N. veitchii and N. veitchii X N.
The rare Rafflesia tengku-adlinii has also been found in
Maliau Basin, one of only two known localities in
Sabah, a parasite on the Tetrastigma liana. The
liana itself appears to grow in heavily disturbed
sites and two places where the liana and parasite
can be found are the trail down to Bambangan Camp,
and in the disturbed forest on the hill behind
Big mammals that have been recorded in the Forest reserve
included red barking deer, Bornean yellow barking
deer Sambhar deer and bearded pig. There were no
signs of banteng and elephants within the borders of
forest reserve apart from a small comer around
Belian Camp area where a small herd of bantengs were
observed in September, 2000. Bantengs can be
commonly seen outside the southern boundary. There
is also the sighting of Rhinos in Camel Trophy Hut.
For small mammals (monkeys, civets, rats, shrews,
porcupines, pangolin, etc.), about 21 species from 7
families were recorded. Of the 17 rat species in
Borneo, 11 were recorded here. Interestingly, no
squirrels were recorded.
An impressive list comprising some 270 bird species has been
recorded, including Bulwer’s Pheasant, Giant Pitta,
Bathawk, Bornean Bristlehead and eight species of
hornbills, together with several rare montane
species, otherwise found only on Mount Kinabalu and
Trus Madi. These included 24 species of birds which
were new records for Maliau Basin, 5 Bornean endemic
species and 2 migrant species. About 32 species from
5 families of frogs were recorded. Maliau served the
largest concentration of the helmeted hornbill in
the late evening when you can hear loud croaking
Others among the 82 mammal species so far confirmed include
Clouded Leopard and Malayan Sunbear, argus pheasant,
silver leaf monkey, orang utan, elephants, sumatran
rhinos, Bulwer's pheasant, oriental darter, and
peregrine falcon.while on the fringes of the
Conservation Area, Seledang (tembadau) and the
elusive Bay Cat have been seen. There are plenty of
mousedeer, hornbills, monkeys that can be seen
almost every day.
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