J. Hales



Major Habitat Type

Tropical and subtropical coastal rivers

Drainages flowing into

South China Sea, Karimata Strait

Main rivers to other water bodies

The main river in the ecoregion is the Kapuas River, which is one of the longest rivers in the world. It is associated with a system of lakes, the largest of which are Luar, Sentarum, Genali, Tekenang, Pengembung, and Bekuan.  Other rivers in this ecoregion include the Landak and Pawan rivers.



The ecoregion largely corresponds to the lower elevations of the West Kalimantan (Kalimantan Barat) province of Indonesia on the island of Borneo.

Terrestrial habitats

Terrestrial ecoregions in Kapuas include the Borneo montane rain forests [IM0103], Borneo lowland rain forests [IM0102], Borneo peat swamp forests [IM0104], Southwest Borneo freshwater swamp forests [IM0153], and Sunda Shelf mangroves [IM1405] (WWF 2001).

Description of endemic fishes

The Kapuas ecoregion contains 68 endemic species, including several monotypic near-endemic genera: Rohteichthys microlepis, Rasborichthys helfrichii, and Kalimantania lawak.

Justification for delineation

For Southeast Asia, delineations were determined using a bottom-up approach that employed both published and unpublished field data and expert assessment (Abell et al. 2008). The Kapuas basin has a number of endemics that distinguishes it from other basins. The aquatic fauna of this ecoregion shares zoogeographic affinities with Southern Central Sumatra [ecoregion 738].

Level of taxonomic exploration

Data is available for only a few areas (M. Kottelat pers. comm. 2006).


  • Abell, Robin,M.L. Thieme,C. Revenga,M. Bryer,M. Kottelat,N. Bogutskaya,B. Coad,N. Mandrak,S.C. Balderas,W. Bussing,M.L.J. Stiassny,P. Skelton,G.R. Allen,P. Unmack,A. Naseka,R. Ng,N. Sindorf,J. Robertson,E. Armijo,J.V. Higgins,T.J. Heibel,E. Wikramanayake, (2008). "Freshwater Ecoregions of the World: A New Map of Biogeographic Units for Freshwater Biodiversity Conservation" BioScience 58 (5) pp. 403-414.
  • World Wildlife Fund (WWF) (2001) \Terrestrial Ecoregions of the World\ "<"http://www.worldwildlife.org/wildworld/profiles/terrestrial_nt.html">"