Sunday, November 22, 2009

A Monitor Lizard Encounter

It's been a number of months since I went monitor lizard hunting around the back alleys and drains of Bukit Sekilau. Armed with camera and tip-toeing with hushed steps I spotted many a lizard in the hot sun. Since then however, the drains have become littered with all sorts of rubbish and the year has now entered the annual rainy season, making it difficult to observe any sightings of these intriguing creatures.

Returning home from a photography session somewhere in the back roads behind the petrol station, I came across a spot of good luck as I caught this specimen walking the drain:

A medium-sized lizard, yet it was the second biggest one I had seen. I was privileged to see a huge lizard about a year ago slowly trudging his way down a side road, but I was unfortunate not to have my camera on me! This monitor lizard however, hung around for me to take a number of pictures and a video.

These scavengers are rarely seen amongst people and have a network of residences underground, generally travelling in the numerous drains around Bukit Sekilau.

They have beautiful, intricate patterns on their skin. I love the design on their front legs, as in the picture above.

He finally made a dash for it as I got too close for comfort, clumsily crossing the little stream of water before hastily galloping, arms and legs splaying, back up the drain until I followed him no more.

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