Borneo Giant Snake Photographed: Hoax

Posted by: Loren Coleman on February 19th, 2009

Photographs have allegedly been taken of a giant serpentine animal, apparently a snake, near Ulu Rajang on the Baleh River in Borneo, we are suppose to believe. The images, taken by Sibu, a member of a disaster team monitoring flood regions by helicopter, has sparked Internet chatter and media debate.

Reportedly the photographs of the huge snake were taken at 5.30 pm, on January 31, 2009, at one of the Sungai Baleh tributaries from the helicopter. But indeed, they are old photos, which have been floating around the internet since at least 2007, er, make that 2002. See YouTube url noted, below.

Even the rather credible The New Straits Times newspaper in Kuala Lumpur and the Daily Mail of the UK have asked readers for comments about the photos. No reason not to show it here at Cryptomundo and put this one to rest!

Discussions have been about whether the photos are genuine or merely the work of computer photoshopping-type software. Some have said it is merely a log.

As one writer at The New Straits Times asked: “A log can’t be that winding, can it?”

Others have suggested it’s a speedboat, but this has been dismissed because of the twisting wake.

According to legend, as mentioned at sites such as The New Straits Times and The Broken Shield, the Nabau is the local name for this snake said to be more than 100 ft in length and with a dragon’s head and seven nostrils.

As I have mentioned here recently, with the Columbian discovery of the giant 45 ft long fossil snake, Titanoboa, there have been new accounts of a 39 ft snake being sighted in the jungles of Columbia. Should we be surprised an old hox has resurfaced?

Now this news from the rainforests of Borneo slithers into our awareness.

Sources: Daily Mail; The Broken Shield; The New Straits Times (article appears to have no current links now).

Thanks to Jason Pritchett for the initial heads up.


So as not to create any confusion, directly above is the famed photograph taken by a Belgian helicopter pilot, Remy Van Lierde, allegedly during a patrol over a river in the Republic of Congo in 1959. The snake he witnessed has been estimated to be about 40-50 feet long.

Loren Coleman About Loren Coleman
Loren Coleman is one of the world’s leading cryptozoologists, some say “the” leading living cryptozoologist. Certainly, he is acknowledged as the current living American researcher and writer who has most popularized cryptozoology in the late 20th and early 21st centuries. Starting his fieldwork and investigations in 1960, after traveling and trekking extensively in pursuit of cryptozoological mysteries, Coleman began writing to share his experiences in 1969. An honorary member of Ivan T. Sanderson’s Society for the Investigation of the Unexplained in the 1970s, Coleman has been bestowed with similar honorary memberships of the North Idaho College Cryptozoology Club in 1983, and in subsequent years, that of the British Columbia Scientific Cryptozoology Club, CryptoSafari International, and other international organizations. He was also a Life Member and Benefactor of the International Society of Cryptozoology (now-defunct). Loren Coleman’s daily blog, as a member of the Cryptomundo Team, served as an ongoing avenue of communication for the ever-growing body of cryptozoo news from 2005 through 2013. He returned as an infrequent contributor beginning Halloween week of 2015. Coleman is the founder in 2003, and current director of the International Cryptozoology Museum in Portland, Maine.

57 Responses to “Borneo Giant Snake Photographed: Hoax”

  1. fuzzy responds:

    Perhaps the first photo is a pun – isn’t that a “serpentine curve” thru which it just swam?

  2. jdillard71 responds:

    its easy to spot a fake/illusion, But i really think that Remy Van Lierde’s photo hold’s up well to the test of time.

  3. Dj Plasmic Nebula responds:

    well that’s good we all get to see the Object

    cause one day if we find out it’s real, and the pictures are gone, we get to say “I seen that snake on the internet”

  4. topgun911 responds:


    Check this out, the original image without photoshop effect, here!!!

    The original post come from here.

    Rio Napo begins its source in the Ecuadorian Andes and flows into the Amazon river. Giant alligators, lizards, turtles and snakes (boa, anaconda…) live in this river.

    The photo with the village in the foreground come from Amazon River ~~~~ not Rejang.

  5. inbetween responds:

    I agree with Doctor Atlantis on everything, every point he made is exactly correct and is the exact reason to these are fakes. The last photo, the said to be taken from a helicopter is very interesting and using the good doctor’s logic it becomes more interesting, mostly it just looks right, It’s acting like a snake would act. I have no doubt that there is a fifty foot or even larger snake out there, we just have to keep looking. I have never been to Africa for any reason let alone snake hunting, but I have spent a good bit of time doing just that in south America. So far nothing that you couldn’t see in just about any zoo. However, if you stick to the straight logic of Doctor Atlantis, it really weeds this crap out fast.

  6. samsamall responds:

    The photographer should take it more than one photo to prove it’s the real snake, but actually this is fake photo produced by Photoshop!!!!!

  7. cavenam01 responds:

    The snake in the upper picture is a fake. If you look at the surrounding terrain and compare the snake against it you would be looking at a snake of some three hundred feet. The head by its self is as large as some of those tree tops. A snake that large could not exist for if no other reason than it’s own body weight would crush it’s internal organs. it’s weight would have to be several tons and that’s just if you scale it by the growth ratio of modern pythons and boas. The rivers in Borneo are mangrove rivers for the most part they are wide and swampy and not really deep so finding deep enough water to help support it’s girth would be nearly impossible. It takes a snake of that type many years just to get twenty feet long so unless that’s the Moses of pythons and is four or five hundred years old it’s fake. Now I have no problem seeing a very old python of some type reaching thirty or possibly even forty feet like the one photographed from the chopper in the fifties. Possibly a rock python or some unknown type of offshoot from the reticulated family. Even that has it’s limits though. As far as this snake being an anaconda species a twelve foot anaconda if well fed can weigh a hundred pounds so you do the math. Like I said it’s own body weight would crush it. It’s a hell of a notion a several hundred foot snake it’s just not very realistic.

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