There are 6 fascinating animals widespread in Sulawesi. Sulawesi, an exotic orchid-shaped island formerly known as Celebes protects a number of exotic wildlife that will not be found anywhere else in the world. Geographically, Sulawesi lies on the edge of the so-called Wallace Line, named after its discoverer Alfred Wallace where at this juncture is drawn along the deep Sulawesi Sea that separates the island of Borneo from Sulawesi. West of this line is land on the Asian continental tectonic plate, whereas terrains to the east are on the Australian continental plate which accounts for the very distinctive animals and plants found on these two now neighboring islands.
Some widespread wildlife animals on Sulawesi are anoa, babirusa, black macaque, maleo birds, kuskus bear and tarsius. In North Sulawesi, you can see them in Tangkoko Nature Park near Bitung and Bagani Nani Wartabone Park, further west to the province of Gorontalo.
Here are the 6 fascinating animals widespread in Sulawesi:
Anoa resembles a water buffalo but it is much smaller so that people also call it as the small buffalo. Amazingly, its size is only slightly larger than a goat. Now, anoa becomes one of the endangered species as its numbers decrease year by year. At present, there are only 5,000 anoas are believed to be still in existence. In fact, there are two species of anoas, namely those living in the lowlands (Bubalus depressicornis), and those in the highlands (Bubalus quarlesi). Both of them can be distinguished by their body and the size of their horns. These animals constantly keep moving. Hence, when they are attacked, the anoas defend themselves by diving into the swamps and when they are in danger, they will fight with their horns.
2. Babirusa (Wild Boar)
This is a wild boar species that you can find in Sulawesi and the surrounding islands of Togean, Malenge, Sula, and Buru. Different from the commonly average wild boar, this babirusa has very long tusks that pierce to its mouth barrel then curves up almost touching its eyes. The Babirusa eats fruits and only hunts at night to avoid hunter attackers and other carnivores. In fact, it is a shy animal so that it keeps avoiding humans, yet when it feels disturbed, then the babirusa can be very fierce.
3. Maleo Bird
At a glance, Maleo bird looks like a cockerel but it has a black and white crest. Although included as a bird species, Maleo bird does not fly but it often prefers to walk just like chickens. Its crowning glory on its crest is unique to the Maleo and it is believed to function to seek heat for its habitat and for hatching.
Moreover, Maleo bird lives near warm beaches or in areas that own hot water springs. Maleo birds need heat to hatch their eggs, since they leave their eggs buried only in the sand. Furthermore, in order to dig into the sand maleo bird has an extra digit that it requires for digging.
4. Kuskus Bear
Kuskus bear is actually a marsupial that grows larger than the average kuskus, therefore, it more resembles a bear. Its body height is about 56 cm with quite a long tail of 54 cm, having a total weight of around 8 kg. The kuskus bear is actually a quiet animal making hardly any sound except when it is disturbed. The Kuskus bear is usually active during the day, while most of the time it prefers to sleep and rest. Well, it is only active for a little time to eat leaves and fruits.
5. Black Macaque
The black macaque of Sulawesi is called the wolai ape or yaki by the local population. You can find its habitat only in north Sulawesi and some smaller islands around. This endemic animal has an entirely black body, with a tuft on its head. Similar with other primates living in the forests, the macaques eat leaves, nuts, flowers, tubers, some kinds of insects, molluscs, and snakes. Moreover, the macaques live on highlands of more than 2,000 meters above the sea level. They love the primary forests as their habitat and a place to look for their food. Besides swinging around on the trees, the black macaques also often walk on the ground.
As the smallest primate in the world, Tarsius Tarsier has been made the icon of the province of North Sulawesi. Its size is only between 10 — 15 cm, weighing only around 80 grams. Therefore, it can easily fit in the palm of your hand. Its distinguished eyes have a diameter of 16 mm which take up the larger part of its skull. Furthermore, Tarsius has long got legs so that it has been named Tarsius. It has soft fur resembling almost like velvet, brown grey, light brown, or light orange in color.
The Tarsius belongs to the insectivore as they eat insects. They catch and hunt the insects by jumping on their prey. In fact, Tarsiers can even catch a flying bird. Amazingly, this nocturnal animal is very faithful so that it only has one mate through a lifetime. When its mate dies, the remaining tarsius will not even take another mate throughout its entire lifespan.
They are all the 6 fascinating animals widespread in Sulawesi that you can still see directly there. They all now become some of the rare animals still alive in Sulawesi. Thus, you should come to this gorgeous island to find out all those 6 rare animals. If you are lucky, you can also see other beautiful flora and fauna of Sulawesi.