Seakayaking in Thailand - Phuket, Phang Nga, Krabi, Khao Sok and South Thailand : Original Sea Kayak Tour Operator Since 1989

Animals of Phang Nga Bay

Crab-Eating .Macaque ( Macaca fascicularis )

"Monkey" is the generic name for "primates". Our brand, the Crab-eating Macaque,ranges from Bangladesh to Mindanao.
The species is the same as the Long Tailed Macaque and there is actually no difference between them except for their diet, which has given the Mangrove dwellers its name. The name is appropriate. The crab-eating Macaque live in mangroves or on islands where they collect crabs and oysters. In terms of adaptability, personality, and social structure these primates are very human-like.
If we are quiet in the caves and hongs we sometimes see macaques closely enough
to communicate without words. They enjoy well-structured human-like families that will make you laugh! Curious adolescents come close, while anxious parents scold them from afar. Scientists all agree that we should never, never feed wild monkeys. They become dangerous beggars, dependent upon "human" food and lose the ability to live a natural life.
Fruit Bat ( Pteropodidae family)

There's at least one fruit bat colony living around Bat Cave or Oyster Hong.
When you see the colony hanging in trees high up in the cliffs, do not disturb them. Please note, the Fruit Bat's well defined head and face structure is far different from the
grotesque nose and ear patterns of cave bats. The current theory is that these bats
originally feasted on insects living in fruit, and eventually preferred fruit over insects.

The fruit bats populating the Indo-Pacific region almost all belong to the Cynoprterus sub-family, with four highly probable species in the Penak colony. Academics arguing fruit bat taxonomy
would have to kill a bat and check its dental pattern for a definite identification. Excuse us for not doing that. The bats also thank you!
To avoid bat hawks (now rare in Thailand), fruit bats usually wait until dusk to
fly. They have excellent night vision and sense of smell, which they use to locate fruit.
Penak's colony flies far every night, probably to the Ao Luk and Koh Yao regions.
From studies in Malaysia, scientists have determined they have a range of about 20KM for collecting their fruit.

Water Monitor (Varanus Salvator)

This monitor lizard is one of the largest in the world, second only to the famous Komodo dragon. However,it does not have the vicious traits of its larger cousin.

It inhabits well watered areas up to 1200m high, but the islands of Phang Nga bay arewhere many have made their home after their natural predator the Saltwater Crocodile disappeared from the waters in this area. They are active mainly in the day, but you can sometimes spot them warming up early in the morning on tree branches and rocks. Crabs and frogs are its preferred food, but its diet also includes eggs, nestling birds, small mammals, lizards, carrion and sometimes Kayakers. (that's a joke!) The juvenile lizards feed on insects.

Clutches of eggs ranging from between 15-30 eggs are laid at the beginning of the rainy season. A fully grown adult may reach the length of up to 2.6 meters, although a specimen found once was measured at 3.2 meters.

Fiddler Crab (Uca)

One of the most unusual little inhabitants of the mangroves and wetlands area are the crabs of the family Ocypodidae, more commonly known as fiddler crabs. The name comes from the male of the species, which has one greatly enlarged claw used in social displays and jousting with rival males.

You may not see that many on the day trips since the Hongs would have to empty of water before they would come out, but we do see them all the time on our expeditions and kayak camps.
Studies in northern Malaysia have found that the densities of these crabs reach up to 60 crabs per square meter.

The role that the fiddler crab plays in the Mangal Ecosystem (Mangroves) is extremely important. It is a sediment feeder and digests the organic matter that has fallen, transforming it into one of the mangrove's fertilizers that provides important nutrients to the whole eco-system. All creatures, great and small, play their part in any eco-system and removing even one small part can break down that system.


mudskippersTo most people, all mudskippers or pla teen in Thai, look the same. But the truth is ... if you look closely, they don't.

According to a study by marine biologist Udomsak Darumas of Prince of Songkla University, there are at least 10 species of mudskipperin Southern Thailand alone. And these pop-eyed fishes differ not only in looks, but also in their way of life.

Unlike most fishes, mudskippers don't like to swim. With the ability to obtain oxygen through their moist skin, they forage, flirt and fight on mudflats and the soggy ground of mangrove forests during low tide. When the water level rises, some species retreat to burrows; others, like this fellow, find a perch on the trees' stilt roots.