Wildlife and Conservation in Malaysia

Malaysia, covering both the mainland peninsula and the northern areas of the island of Borneo, is one of the most diverse ares of flora and fauna on earth - with 361 species of mammals, over 350 types of bird life and an incredible diversity of sea life in its coastal waters.

Several of the larger mammals are teetering on the precipice of extinction, driven there by habitat loss and hunting to feed the Chinese medicine market. National Parks and protected Conservation zones do give a safe haven to many.

Its big cats are the Malayan tiger, found on the mainland and critically endangered to 250 or so surviving individuals. The Indochinese Tiger might still live in the far north of the country but otherwise is extinct. There are also Indochinese leopards and clouded leopards.

Sunbears still live in the forests, as do tapirs, boar and several species of deer. A small population of Asian elephants still exist on the peninsula, reported as c.1,200 in number.

The fauna of Borneo is slightly different, with clouded leopards and sunbears the main predators, with a population of elephants and civets. Bornean rhinos are now extinct through a combination of poaching and habitat loss. Borneo is famous for ts primates, most iconically the Orangutan. These to are critically endangered mainly due to habitat loss brought about by the clearing of forest for palm oil plantations, as well as bush meat hunting and the pet trade.

Malaysia does work hard to protect any stunning habitats. It has more than 25 Protected areas and over 40 Marine Parks. On the Peninsula these include Taman Negara National Park, covering over 1 millions acres of the Worlds oldest primary rainforest. If you are visiting the East coast a stay here is an essential highlight. On Borneo there are also reserves to explore, many by boat as they are only accessible by water. For the adventurous a climb of Kota Kinabalu surrounded by its own National Park combines wildlife with some spectacular trekking.

Safaris visiting this attraction

10 days
From £1996
Borneo Rainforest and Beach

You’ll get generous helpings of everything this remarkable island is best at on our 10 day Borneo Rainforest & Beach holiday. Snorkel over coral reefs in a Marine Park, see rescued orang-utans at Sepilok - and spot for wild ones deep in Danum Valley Con

16 days
From £3630
Complete Borneo

Journey deep into the landscape and cultures of this remarkable island on our Complete Borneo holiday. Take a longtail boat to a tribal longhouse, visit orang-utan sanctuaries, explore pristine rainforest on foot and by boat, and disappear into one of the