crab-eating monkey

Sepilok Rainforest to Mangrove (part 2 of 4)

Continued from part 1…
(You may Click Here to start reading from Part 1)

Sepilok Laut Reception Center (SLRC)
Here I was in Sepilok Laut Reception Center (SLRC), deep inside the pristine Sepilok mangrove forest, which makes up nearly 30% of Kabili-Sepilok forest reserve. SLRC is 5.5 KM away from the popular Sepilok Orangutan Rehabilitation Center.

Sepilok Laut Reception Center
Sepilok Laut Reception Center signage
>> Click Here to see more photos of Sepilok Forest

SLRC is managed by the Sabah Forestry Department. The Center is for researchers to study the mangrove and rainforest, as well as schools and tourists who want to have recreational tour here to enjoy the natural mangrove environment. The Center is a wooden stilt house built on the mudflat of the mangrove, and it also serves as an enforcement station to prevent intruders from stealing the wood. There have been some illegal Filipino immigrants trying to steal the bark of mangrove tree for making liquor.

Sepilok Laut Reception Center

SLRC consists of two main building, i.e. reception building and staff quarter, connected by a boardwalk.

Tour package to Kota Kinabalu

Sepilok Laut Reception Center

You can watch the 5-minute video below to tour around SLRC, without reading the rest of my lengthy text description:

Click Here to watch bigger video

1. Reception Building

SLRC has no electricity supply during daytime, but the staff turns on the power generator every day after 6pm (or whenever necessary) until morning.

The Reception Building has two dormitory rooms. Each room has two bunk beds and able to take 4 people.
Hostel in Sepilok Laut Reception Center

The dormitory room is quite basic and only has a fan and wardrobe. Pillow and blanket are provided for each bed. The room is quite clean and new.
Hostel room

Outside the rooms is a shared bathroom. Water heater is not available but it’s ok, consider our climate is warm throughout the year.

There is a big living room area, where you can watch TV. Astro, the satellite TV channel, is available.
TV in Sepilok Laut Reception Center
Living room in Sepilok Laut Reception Center
>> Click Here to see more photos of Sepilok Forest

You may sign the guest book at the reception counter or call your dad for money. They have a satellite phone (No: +60-89-676306).
Reception counter
Satellite phone

As there is nothing much to do, you may check out some display items and information.
Insect specimens
photo exhibition
>> Click Here to see more photos of Sepilok Forest

You can see the nice view of mangrove forest outside the window.
Mangrove outside window

It was raining so I sat inside to stay dry and warm, and enjoyed the river view.

There are crocodiles around here, some are big enough to become man eater, so don’t go swimming in the water. The staff says you would see them during high tide at night. Just few days ago, they witnessed the fight between a monitor lizard and crocodile. The crocodile won and grabbed the tail of the lizard that tried to escape. It sounds like a dinosaur fight in Ultraman TV. Too bad I miss the show.
beware of crocodile

2. Staff Quarter + Kitchen

There is no restaurant in SLRC, so you must bring your own food. You may cook your food and boil drinking water in the kitchen next to the Reception Building. Since I only stayed one night, I brought only canned food.

boardwalk to kitchen

You may have your meal in the dining area. Cooking gas stove, wok, plates, spoon, cups, etc. are available in the kitchen.
dining area

But be careful of the naughty monkey. They would steal your food.

If you come with a group a friends, you can BBQ here too. More fun..
BBQ stove
>> Click Here to see more photos of Sepilok Forest

If you think you desire better accommodation with air-conditioning, you may book the chalet which can host 8 guests.
Chalet of Sepilok Laut Reception Center

watch tower
Above: there is a lookout tower not far from the building on higher ground. They say some mobile phone line may get coverage there, but not Digi. In terms of line coverage in Sabah, Digi sucks real bad. This is what a frequent traveller like me can tell you. Maxis is the best so far.

view from watch tower
view of mangrove
You can get a nice view of large mangrove area from the lookout tower. SLRC is in intertidal zone, so you get different view in low and high tides. During low tide, the mudflat under the river will expose.

The mudflat of mangrove is a busy world. I stood on the boardwalk and saw many activities down there.

fiddler crabs fighting
The fight between two colorful male fiddler crabs.

Mudskipper, a peculiar fish that can walk on land.

monitor lizard
Monitor lizard is the second largest predator (next to crocodile) in mangrove.

mangrove tree
The main mangrove species here are bangkita (Rhizophora apiculata), tengar (Ceriops tagal), nyireh(Xylocarpus granatum), and geriting (Lumnitzera littorea). These trees are adapted to harsh saline and anaerobic water-logged soil in this area.

>> Click Here to see more photos of Sepilok Forest

long-tailed macaque
In late afternoon, I noticed movement in the wood nearby the Center. It was a big long-tailed macaque. According to the forestry staff, it’s the King here…

Read Next Article (part 3)…

Update (Nov 2012)!

Now Sepilok Laut Reception Centre (SLRC) has a new boardwalk in mangrove. You may want to read the new upgrade and latest change of SLRC facilities here.

Photos taken in Sandakan, Sabah, Malaysia Borneo

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