Vertebrate fauna of SE Asia
  

 

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Text and photos by Nick Baker, unless otherwise credited.
Copyright ゥ Ecology Asia 2020

 
 
     
   
   

 

   
   
 
Malayan Water Monitor
   
   

Fig 1


Fig 2


Fig 3


Fig 4


Fig 5


Fig 6


Fig 7


Fig 8

 

Family : VARANIDAE
Species : Varanus salvator
Size (snout to vent) :  up to one metre
Size (total length) : up to 3 metres

This common species occurs throughout Southeast Asia in virtually all habitats including urban areas where it may sometimes be seen feasting on roadkill. It is particularly common, however, in mangrove areas as it is a strong swimmer and it can flourish on a diet of crabs and other large invertebrates. 

It can remain submerged underwater for a considerable time. It is also an agile climber, and a raider of bird's nests. The Malayan Water Monitor is distinguished from other monitors by the position of the nostrils, which lie near the tip of the snout.


Fig 1 : A 2 metre adult at Sungei Buloh, Singapore.

Fig 2 : Consuming a dead Red-eared Terrapin at Macritchie Forest, Singapore.

Fig 3 : Consuming an introduced American Bullfrog at Singapore Botanic Gardens.

Fig 4 : Resting in the bough of a lakeside tree, Upper Seletar, Singapore.

Fig 5 : Tracks on a beach at Sentosa, Singapore.

Fig 6:  Juvenile sunning itself on fallen leaves.

Fig 7 : Strongly patterned adult at edge of swiftly-flowing, rocky river at Danum Valley, Sabah, Borneo.

Fig 8 : Huge adult, reaching nearly 3-metres, in mangrove habitat at Sungei Buloh, Singapore.


References : H1, H2