Trip report from Borneo – Oct 2019 – Tomer Ben-Yehuda

8 Comments
  1. Michael Johnson 5 months ago

    I have just read the comments regarding bringing thermal scopes into Singapore and thought I would comment on my own experience, as it is not as risk free as implied.

    Last month I was flying from KL to Perth and transiting through Changi. All passengers coming off the inbound flight from KL were inspected. at the gate. Everyone had to go through a metal detector and hand luggage was x-rayed. On noticing my binoculars staff specifically asked if they were a thermal scope.

    After passing through I took the opportunity to talk to the preceding officer and find out exactly what was the law in Singapore: She told me:

    1.Thermal scopes are a prohibited import into Singapore without a permit which is only granted if the scope is for an approved use.
    2. Any scope found on a traveller entering Singapore will be confiscated.
    3. A traveller transiting and not entering Singapore would be allowed to keep it.

    I have travelled through Singapore a number of times over the last few years and this is the first time I have been searched on arrival. Middle class western travellers are unlikely to be prime targets for Customs, so the chances of a scope being picked up are probably small. However if your scope is discovered, it will be confiscated.

    • Profile photo of tomeslice Author
      tomeslice 5 months ago

      Very interesting point!

      I wonder if there is a particular problems with hunters coming from Malaysia to Singapore?
      Because, like I said, nowhere did it say “please note that you are not allowed to bring thermal scopes into the country”. And even though Stuart did have his on him, they didn’t confiscate it.

      To be honest, it’s strange for them not to warm visitors before, since unlike illegal drugs, this is not something that’s globally prohibited. So if there is something that’s not allowed in the country – they really need to warn people before making the trip, and not confiscate it upon arrival. These things are particularly expensive too.

      Anyway, I’m SO happy that your post only surfaced now, and not before I went there… I already lost enough sleep as it was, on the thought that it might get confiscated… Phew.

  2. Alan Dahl 5 months ago

    Fantastic report Tomer! It sounds like you guys had a great trip. Congrats on the Whitehead’s Pygmy Squirrel (one of my favorites too) but too bad about the Banded Linsang…that’s on my short list for “someday”.

    Looks like you need to make a return visit just like we do. It’s amazing that even though you saw so much there is still so much that you didn’t see. Next time, right? LOL

    Alan

    • Profile photo of kittykat23uk
      kittykat23uk 5 months ago

      Fourth time lucky hopefully in my case if I make it out there again. I will have a bit more to add to this now that Tomer has completed his narrative, although I think he omitted certain misadventures of his…. there will be a bit about Tawau lowlands and more on the birds when I start putting it up on safaritalk.net.

      • Profile photo of tomeslice Author
        tomeslice 5 months ago

        Hahaha I forgot to write about the part where I almost fell through a bridge 30m down to the river, by not realizing the wooden planks are spaced out. And while not falling through it completely, I fell so that the corner of the next plank hit me so hard in the knee that I actually felt dizzy and then proceeded to pass out for several seconds. This was a scary moment for the rest of the group… and for me as well. But luckily it ended this way, and all I had was an ugly bruise – but felt fine the next morning. Phew! 😀

  3. Alan Dahl 5 months ago

    Hi Jo, looking forward to reading your report especially any more misadventures.

    Tomer, glad you made it out of that that one OK. I can relate since I fell down the stairs at Deramakot last trip. Mike kindly drove me to and from Telupid for stitches. It was quite the misadventure too…

  4. Profile photo of Antee
    Antee 5 months ago

    Nice report.

    Will be back for my third time this summer with 5 nights Deramakot and 5 nights Danum.

  5. Profile photo of Mattia from Italy
    Mattia from Italy 5 months ago

    Hi Tomer! Great trip and, as usual, a very well written trip report!

    I am very sorry for the Clouded Leopard. It seems that an encounter of 1 minute every two weeks is now the rule. Not worth such a long stay at the moment, with all this long night driving.

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