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Friday, April 16, 2010

Nabau, Sarawak's mythical monster snake spotted?





Malaysia is not short of mysterious monsters. In 2006, local crytozoologists were excited with the purported spotting of a giant ape-like creature in the Endau-Rompin National Park of Johor. Nicknamed Johor Bigfoot, it was a distant cousin of the Sasquatch of the Northwest Pacific states of USA. Of course, Pahang's Lake Cini has long been associated with the legend of a water serpent called Gumum. The most frequent claimed sightings by Orang Asli have occurred in a body of water called Laut Gumum. Personally, I have cruised Lake Cini, an experience that was eerie as its water surface is black due to the presence of iron oxide in its bottom soil.

Sarawak has joined the ranks of "Land of Monsters" with the purported sighting of Nabau, a mythical snake with a girth the size of an oil drum and almost 100 feet (30 metres) in length! The story goes that on January 31, 2009, a disaster relief committee member was monitoring the flood situation on the Sungai Baleh, (a tributary of the Rejang river) on a helicopter. He spotted a gigantic snake swimming in the river, and managed to take two photographs of the monster (see above) using his handphone camera. According to Iban mythology, a Nabau is a god with supernatural powers and anyone sighting it will die! Previous sightings of Nabau have occured in other places in Sarawak such as Sungai Stambak Ulu and Sungai Stambak Ili. While detractors have dismissed such beasts as just anacondas, it should be noted that the average length of an anaconda is only 30 feet while a Nabau is much, much bigger. Furthermore, anacondas are not found in Sarawak.

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