The eco-system that exist in this strange mangrove forest is one of the existing wonders of this planet and while here in Langkawi this definitely is 'must' place to visit. The waters here vary in salinity and whatever vegetation that thrives here must have a strong tolerance towards high and low salt content.
The mangrove tree (Rizophora Mucronata) where Malaysia has the greatest diversity in the world - over 33 species is a highly evolved tree. To overcome drowned root systems with no aeration (oxygen) during the high tide, they have evolved ariel roots - also known as 'breathing roots' (pneumatophores) that shoot upwards towards the sky.
The high slat content does not affect them because they are about the only tree that is capable to reverse osmosis - hence they acually produce their own fresh water from the seawater. Another unique feature of this wonder tree is that they are able to control evaporation from their leaves by an ability to 'move' their leaves away from the sun. They are also able to close their pores.
Another tree that thrives here is the mangrove palm or the nipah palm (nipah fruiticans). This palm is also known as the 'romantic palm' because its tall leaves sway in the tropical breeze and produce sweet romantic melodies. The leaves of this palmare thatched into 'atap' which is used roofing. They are also used inwrapping and rolling the local cigarettes know as 'rokok daun'.
From the flower bud-stem of this 'singing palm of the tropics' is tapped a precious sap, call 'nira'. Nira is a sweet and highly nutritious drink. Nira is also processed into the local brown sugar called 'gula melaka'.
The Fiddler Crab is a species that enjoys the brackish water of the mangrove. One of its claws normally is oversized.
The Mudskipper are basically a fish with advanced gill-lung development. They are able to breath on land as well as swim in water.
The Mangrove Snake, (Boiga Tendrophila) is a quite harmless, but it should not be mistaken for the Banded Krait which is highly poisonous.
The Malayan Clouded Leopard usually 1.5 meters or more in length. Normally brownish with greyish spot, is another 'local' of the mangrove. This is the biggest cat found in Langkawi