Where ever there is a hotel in the Malaysian forest, there will be monkeys waiting for any leftovers or other goodies they can find. These primates may look cute, but they are wild and can be savage.
They will sneak into your room and ransack it for food if you leave the windows open. They can also be quite agressive if they feel their space is invaded. The alpha male is quite capable of charging an adult human and inflicting serious injury. Don't look them in the eye (a bellicose sign to them) and give them wide berth, espcially if you come on a male protecting a family group.
They won't suck the life out of you, but still...
Leeches. They're there, even if you don't see them at first. The ones you'll encounter in Taman Negara are really quite small--a couple of inches long, and about the thickness of a bootlace. They have suckers at both ends, and they use one end to attach themselves to leaves on bushes or forest debris on the ground. The other end waves around in the air waiting for a victim to pass.
If you're not prepared, they can ruin the pleasure of a hike since you'll be constantly on the lookout for them on your legs, arms, and socks.
There are two basic solutions:
1) Cover up. Wear long sleeves, long trousers with the legs tucked into your socks, and hiking boots. Still they'll get on you. And they may even be able to attach themselves to your flesh through the cloth of your shirt if it's sticking to your skin from the sweat you will produce from hiking while dressed from head to toe in a steamy equatorial rainforest.
2) Buy a household insecticide spray called Baygon before going to the park. Spray it on your shoes, socks, trousers, shirt. Note that this sray is not an insect repellant and is not recommended for direct contact with your skin. If you don't like the idea of using an insecticide in a pristine forest sanctuary, try rubbing Tiger Balm, a product of Singapore, onto your skin. It is said that leeches are repelled by the smell.
If you should actually find a leech embedded somewhere on your body, DO NOT PANIC. By all means don't try to remove it by pulling it off. The safest way to make it drop off is by sprinkling table salt onto it. However, you will still have been bitten. The leech's saliva has an anticoagulant function, so you may have some slight bleeding from the wound. It probably won't hurt you at all, though, in the long run (although some people do suffer reactions such as swelling and itching).
En-route to Gunung Tahan, one crosses the river 7 times. Beware of the leaches that lurk in the water.
To remove it:
2. A lighter to burn it
Do not remove it manually with your bare hand cuz the 'fangs' of the leach will remain in your flesh.
- Hiking and Walking
As the year draws to an end... the wheather also takes a turn for a change. By early November heavy rains begin to fall in Taman Negara. So it might not be the best season to visit.
Be prepared for the uneven terrain in many parts of Taman Negara. Heck, this is afterall a jungle! Just wear good shoes and do the trek at your own pace.
Sticking to Shallow Pools
Stick to shallow pools if you can, it's safer and you won't fall into the risk of getting towed away by a powerful current.
While on a guided nite jungle walk, the guide showed us an army of ants and they are sure huge. Nothing like the common ants...these ones are sure different !
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