Sarawak Hornbills

Sarawak is also known as the land of the hornbills or Kenyalang as it's known locally.

No you geographically incompetence knob, land below the wind is for Sabah and please... Sabah is the state up in the north of Borneo Island. Sarawak is southward (points down, duh) and for goodness sake, yes we are part of Malaysia.

With so much lack of exposure or rather, a true picture of what Sarawak is; it is not surprising that majority Sarawak's visitors were disappointed as they did not see any hornbills flying around our cities and towns. Seriously, somehow Sarawak today is still been over sold as the land of the primitive headhunters surrounded by thick tropical jungle. I blame it on the mass media and tourism department for the misleading information!

Hello? Do you expect to see kangaroos hoping in major cities in Australia or panda bears crawling in the middle of Shanghai? I rest my case.

Don't get me wrong here, I love Sarawak as it is. It's still is, and hopefully will still be, the most beautiful place surrounded by one of the world oldest rainforest. This is within reach outside of our modern cities and towns that dots Sarawak's map. A great place to call home as it feel safe and has friendly peace loving tolerance multi ethic group. So please no more headhunter or we live on top of trees stories as they are the thing of the past, that's unless you are still reading outdated misguided tour book in caves.

So what is a hornbill? Hornbill, as the name suggests, is a kind bird with a unique huge beak. The size and shape of this bill varies between the species, which about 8 known variants are found in Sarawak alone.

photo sourced from

Most hornbills have black, white or gray plumage but many have strikingly colourful bills. The hornbill or scientifically known as Rhinoceros Hornbill, although capable of flying long distance, however, is not as accomplished a flyer as many other birds. Hornbills are omnivorous, eating fruit, insects and small animals. They also can be distinctively identify from the noise that results from their flying motion and mating calls.

The local native, Iban, view hornbills as a symbol of purity and believes that it brings messages from the spirit world. They use either the bird itself or it's representation, carved and painted hornbills, in their religious ceremonies. Adopted as the State Bird of Sarawak, the hornbill is a protected species as in other South East Asian countries. So if you chance to see one, only shoot them with camera please.

So why not plan your next trip to the land of Hornbills? Our local tour agency will surely be able to arrange out bound adventure trips. And who knows, maybe you might spot a hornbill or two and oh, if you see headhunters, try to avoid them. :)

Hope to see you in Sarawak soon, the land of great adventures.


Dude, nice blog going on here. Seems like we share many common interests, mainly our love for golf,Kuching and the breakfast around here. And I really appreciate the 'non-halal' warning sign in the 'Kueh-Chap' post. By now ur guessing I'm a Kuching blogger. Too right, but I'm not that active lately. Check out my blog.

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