Large fruit bat in central Torajaland, Sulawesi, Indonesia
Most of the Wetpixel group traveling to Toraja are more used to photographing wildlife than they are photographing landscapes and people. Bernie, our guide, took us to a place where hundreds of large fruit bats hung on towering clumps of bamboo. I’m not sure what kind of bats they were, but they were likely Indonesian short-nosed fruit bats (Cynopterus titthaecheilus). A few of them were flying around during the day, and I snapped these shots with a Canon 7D and 70-200mm/2.8L lens @ 200mm (crop). (read more »)
4 skulls deep in a burial cave in Londa, Toraja (Sulawesi, Indonesia)
As an interlude between diving Ambon and Raja Ampat, 9 of us are on a 4-day tour of Toraja, which is up in the mountains of central Sulawesi, Indonesia. Traditional burials of the deceased here are in “hanging” graves on cliff faces, but we also were taken to see burial caves in a village called Londa. Although much of the caves were filled with old skulls and bones, we saw a coffin that had placed there earlier this year.
Toraja has a rich culture around death, and we spent much of our two full days here attending the funeral of a local man. 6 buffalos and 2 pigs were slaughtered at the event, and the meat was distributed to family members who aggregated for the 3-day celebration. We were invited in to one of the temporary shelters erected for the event, and feel honored to have been treated like family.