Sunday, December 25, 2011

RUN NO. 2261 - 20 DEC 2011 - TASEK LAMA

RUN NO. 2261

As we arrived at Jalan Teraja by the Radisson Hotel, jockeying for car park spaces were observed with a few local walkers watching with curiousity.

A couple of hens had gone to the wrong end of Tasek Lama but soon were reunited with the coup before the horn sounded and we all headed up Bukit Salelah. It was quite a different scenario as we passed many locals or were passed which was a change from only a group of ladies sauntering along the trek. As the walkie talkies got to the radio mast we were greeted by some macaques with their oranged coloured babies. (upon research it appears it was the natural colour of their babies as some of us were intrigued by the colour).

Extract from Jungle Drum:
To those of us driving to work or out on the river, monkeys are a familiar part of the Brunei Darussalam landscape. Borneo has two distinct groups of monkeys - on the one hand leaf monkeys and the peculiar proboscis monkey, and on the other hand, macaques. Leaf monkeys spend all of their time in trees, whereas macaques can sometimes be seen on the ground.

The long-tailed macaque ( Macaca fascicularis) is the monkey most commonly spotted on nature hikes or drives to the office. Its call, krra krra, gives the monkey its Malay name, kera. The long-tailed macaque is also called crab-eating macaque because it is common in coastal forests including mangrove and beach, and along rivers where it can easily catch and eat crabs, frogs, or insects. But macaques love other foods as well such as ripe fruit. Macaques therefore live sometimes close to humans where they soon lose their shyness and can become arrogant and even aggressive.

The leaf monkeys that can be seen most easily in Brunei are the silvered langurs. They tend to be most well-behaved, being naturally shy, not inquisitive and never showing aggression, certainly attributes for which the macaques are not noted. They are entirely dark grey and have a distinct crest of hairs on the top of their heads and around their faces, giving them a pretty appearance. Their infants have a surprising bright orange colour.

Silvered langurs live in small groups of five or six and are mainly found in coastal forests, where they feed on leaves, shoots, and fruits. They are also seen in riverine and swamp forests. They appear to co-exist well with the macaque and have been seen feeding on the same branch on a number of occasions. They appear to be more confident in groups, and are less likely to leave their feeding area to 'escape' the intrepid observer.

The silvered langur could, at least until the end of the 1992, be regularly seen close to Panaga, in the swamp forest to the rear of the G4/5 housing area. At present, we have no confirmation of their presence there.

Both the leaf monkeys and the macaques look quite sizeable with a head and body length of up to 60 cm for the macaques and up to 75 cm for the leaf monkeys. They are very light in weight, though, even the taller males rarely exceed 7 kilograms.

© Panaga Natural History Society (PNHS)"

We plodded along (walkie talkes) as I am sure the front runners ran! the familiar trails and at the top went down left and through a part of Tasek Lama not usually used by many. The steps were very corroded and luckily although we have had lots of rain previously, the evening was fine and the trails not too slippery. We caught up with Glamour who actually finished the run. I stayed with Glamour till we got to the tarmac and headed for home. The park was very busy with walkers and families enjoying the facilities. Never Wrong was at the start of the run checking out the sign-in sheet. Four were still in but they were soon out by 6.45 pm, including Tina who had not done her first complete run sinice her knee injury April last (2009).

We then all headed towards Never Wrong's place for the shout up and everyone was dressed for the occasion, looking very relaxed by the pool. A lovely punch was served and JM Jan started the shoutup welcoming Ryvita's mum who is visiting from Sweden and will be in Brunei till February. No hashit was given although the pool was most inviting for a group hashit! Soon Secret Santa arrived and Readymix was the first to sit on santa's knee - strangely no one else sat on Santa's knee and gifts were dished out for all. Dinner of roast turkey with all the trimmings and yummy desserts was served with a few carols being sung by a small group of boisterous hashers, The evening soon concluded before the rain arrived. Thank you Possum for the xmas coolers! and Thank you Never Wrong & Heulwen for being great hostesses. Until next year, keep safe - on on

HARES: GI Jane/Gung Ho

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