Monday, May 5, 2008

Watching wild animals at Batuputih Nature Tourism Park

The wild animals at Batuputih Nature Tourism Park is a major tourist attraction in Bitung regency, North Sulawesi.

Visitors are able to watch and observe a spectrum of animals, mainly tarsiers, the world's smallest primates. There are also Sulawesi crested black macaques, tailless monkeys and bats.

Endangered tropical birds like kingfishers and red-knobbed hornbills, from the toucan family, soar noisily above the jungle.

The Batuputih Nature Tourism Park is part of the vast Tangkoko-Batuangus Nature Reserve with a total area of over 8,700 hectares.

"Wake up, wake up, it's nearly dawn. Let's go, otherwise the tarsiers will go back to their homes," Saroyo Sumarto, a researcher of wild animals in North Sulawesi, shouted to a group of reporters fast asleep.

The nocturnal tarsiers live in groups. One group lives in a large hollow tree in the middle of the forest, which takes about 50 minutes to reach by foot.

The tarsier is tiny, measuring about 8 centimeters in height with huge round eyes and a long tail.

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