Spectral tarsier (Tarsius tarsier)

Spectral tarsier (Tarsius tarsier)

North Sulawesi’s Nocturnal Mascot: Tarsius tarsier

There are other “Creatures of the Night” in Lembeh than the weird and wild ones we see underwater. We even have

some amazing nocturnal critters around our resort too. The spectral tarsier (Tarsius tarsier) can be spotted in the trees in our gardens around sunset and sunrise. It’s an amazing critter and here are unusual facts which prove it….

Did you know that the spectral tarsier is endemic to Sulawesi? The highest highest density of spectral tarsiers (tarsius) is found right here in North Sulawesi.

The tarsius is the smallest of all known primates on the planet. The tiny tarsier has a head-body length of only 9.5 – 14cm and a tail of 20 – 26cm.

Compared to their small bodies, tarsiers have very long slender hands, feet and digits. Their hands are thought to be the longest of any living primate in relation to body size.


Tangkoko Tour - Tarsius


Tarsiers are incredible athletes and can jump 40 times the length of their body. That’s the equivalent of us being able to leap around 60 meters.

What big eyes you have! The tarsier has the biggest eyes of any mammal relevant to body weight. In fact their eyes are bigger than their brains. Their eyes are so big that they are actually immobile but this is compensated for by the tarsiers ability to rotate it’s head 180 degrees. They have the most acute night vision out of all primates.

Tarsius monkeys are monogamous and live in small groups of one reproducing female, one territorial male and 2 or 3 other younger females

Tarsiers give birth to just one infant which is born fully furred and with its eyes open. Infant tarsiers can climb trees at just one day old.

Tarsiers have sleeping sites and then they travel together with their group for around 30 minutes to foraging sites. As morning approaches tarsiers sing, either in duet with their mate or in a group chorus in order to alert other groups that the territory is occupied.

Tarsiers are extremely social and spend their time in groups, playing, grooming, snuggling and even intertwining their tails.

Tarsiers are carnivores and feed mainly on flying insects such as moths, locusts and cicadas. They catch prey in their long fingers and return to their perch to eat it. They often share food with other members in their group.

Did you know that (since 2011) the tarsier is the official mascot of North Sulawesi?

Tarsiers love the gardens around Lembeh Resort and we are extremely lucky to spot them in the trees at sunset and sunrise as they set out and return from an evening of foraging. If you hear a distinctive bird-like singing, look up into the trees and you might spot one.

The Tarsius tarsier is just one of several primate species which we have here in North Sulawesi. Join us for a trip to the Tangkoko National Park and you’ll see tarsiers and the endangered black macaque in their natural habitats as well as numerous rare species of birds. It’s a wonderful day out and our professional tour guides are as expert at spotting wildlife as our dive guides are at spotting marine life.

Are you ready to book your next North Sulawesi adventure? Come and join us for the best muck diving in the world, amazing wildlife and a luxury holiday in the stunning Lembeh Strait: [email protected]

We look forward to welcoming you to our beautiful Indonesian resort soon.