Wreathed hornbill (Aceros undulatus), Sarawak (Borneo), Malaysia. 
	© Terry Domico / WWF
Found only in Borneo
Borneo is estimated to be home to more than around 210 mammal species (including 44 endemic – meaning they are not found anywhere else in the world), 420 birds (37 endemic), 100 amphibians and 394 fish (19 endemic).

Just in the 220,000 km2 region in the mountainous centre of the island known as the Heart of Borneo, there are 10 primate species, over 350 bird species, and 150 reptile and amphibian species.

At least 15,000 plant species, of which over 5,000 are endemic and exist nowhere else in the world, can be found in the swamps, mangroves, and lowland and montane forests of the island. The Heart of Borneo is home to around 10,000 of these.



Borneo’s incredible biodiversity

Borneo’s tropical rainforests and climate provide the ideal conditions for a wide variety of species to thrive. Dipterocarp trees hold the greatest insect diversity on Borneo – as many as 1,000 species can be found in just one tree.

They are also home to thousands of plants, lichens and fungi, which form the base of a food chain that nurtures a wide array of species. This web of life is at the heart of Borneo’s tropical rainforests.

Borneo’s role in the theory of evolution

Borneo has lured scientists for over 150 years, and has played a key role in the theory of evolution. Alfred Wallace's theories of natural selection were inspired by his travels on the island in the 19th century.

Since that time, scientists have busied themselves discovering and naming new species. The latest research suggests that they will continue doing so for decades to come – if the forests are not wiped out first.


Finding rare wildlife in Borneo

The place that holds the largest potential for new discoveries is the Heart of Borneo. It harbours large and continuous tracts of virgin montane forest, much of which remains unexplored.

The montane forests of Borneo are like high altitude islands in a sea of lowland dipterocarp forests. Due to their isolation, these places harbour a unique and rich selection of plant and animal species from Asian and Australasian families, making them one of the most diverse montane habitats on Earth.


More information on Borneo's species