Tembadau (Banteng) (Bos javanicus)
This family contains cattle, buffalo, antelope, goats and sheep. All are characterised by horns which are never shed and which continue to grow as the animal gets older. Both males and females have horns in all of the species occurring in Borneo.
The Tembadau, Bos javanicus, the only species known to occur naturally in the wild in Borneo. Water Buffalo, Bubalus bubalis, and Cattle, Bos indicus, are probably all descended from domestic animals introduced to Borneo. A large goat-like animal with unbranched straight horns has been reported by road-builders in hills about 100 km north of Samarinda in East Kalimantan. If authentic, the report suggests the presence of the Serow, Capricornis sumatraensis, previously known only from mainland South-east Asia and Sumatra. This species is not to be confused with the Domestic Goat, Capra aegagrus, which is widespread wherever there are people.
Measurements: Height at shoulder 120-170 cm, adult females smaller than adult males, more slender and with smaller horns.
Identification: Adults males black or blackish; adult females and young males reddish-brown. Both sexes with distinctive white buttocks and "stockings" on the lower part of the legs.
Similar species: Water Buffalo, Bubalus bubalis, and Domestic Cattle, Bos indicus, lack white on the buttocks, although the domesticated form of the Tembadau, known as Bali Cattle, and some cross-breeds between Bali and other Domestic Cattle appear almost identical to wild Tembadau.
Ecology and Habitat: Mainly nocturnal, probably partly a result of hunting pressure. Diet mainly grasses, with some herbaceous and low woody vegetation. Visits natural mineral sources, including the sea. In eastern Sabah, most often encountered in groups of about 8-10 individuals, consisting of one mature male with mature females and young; sometimes solitary males, small groups and herds of up to about 40.
Prior to the 1940's, reported as common along the banks of most major rivers in eastern Sabah and in many areas of shifting cultivation in the west and north, even in interior hill ranges. The widespread use of guns led to rapid extermination from most areas. Now, locally common in logged forest on flatland, but again being exterminated as land is cleared for permanent agriculture. Occurs in dipterocarp, swamp and beach forests.
Distribution: B.j. lowi- Occurs along Kutai and probably other scattered parts of Kalimantan; extinct in Brunei and no recent reports from Sarawak.