Saturday, 11 April 2009

The Nostalgic Cries of the Hornbills.

The Nostalgic Cries of the Hornbills
For the past few years now, this pair of Hornbills have been
flying over Taiping's Lake Garden airspace, where the Zoo is located.
They would never fail to stop at my neighbour's roof and TV antennae,
while making the shrill and loud cries. They reminded me of those bygone era
when once, the cries of this birds were a part of our jungle. Today, there
is only a deafening silence.
  • It was not very long ago that we were very close to nature - about sixty years ago to be exact. We depended on nature for our survival. The rivers provided us the fish. The jungles provided us the vegetables and animals for our meat. But alas! Our greed was our enemy. Slowly, but surely, we were destroying the very environment that we depended upon. We over-fished the rivers and streams and even use poison (tuba) to catch fish. We over-hunted the jungles, until there were no more deer, wild boars, monkeys and even birds such as the hornbills. They were hunted into extinction.
  • Will they ever return? I doubt it very much. Given the same pristine jungle environment that existed some sixty years ago, I might have given it some chances. Today, as more jungles are being cleared for development, the chances are remote.
  • However, there is hope yet. A year ago, my brother Linggir said some of the animals such as wild boar and mouse deer had been sighted. With no big-scale hunting being organised, as in those days, I feel some of the animals might return.


  1. I saw some Kenyalang in Bintangor forests by the river. Never something like this. Nice to know they can be found in your area.

  2. Hi Chung,

    Thanks for reading my blog. Everything I do, see and hear are always linked to my home town in Sarawak now. What I experienced in my early days there had a deep impact in my life.

    These two kenyalangs are living free in Taiping Zoo. They fly in and out as they wish.

    By the way, are you a Sarawakian? An ex Tanjong Lobang School/College?

  3. Dear Colonel, when you showed these pictures of hornbills, it remembers me of the Iban's ritual of 'beburong'. Maybe, the present of the hornbills is a good 'burong' for you...Rano

  4. Dear Akat,

    Hopefully you are right. I need a good burong to push me along in life.