As it got dark, shrimp started to rise out of the water, crawling along the rocks along the river’s edge. This strange parade that appeared in Ubon Ratchathani province, northeastern Thailand, became creative inspiration for many local legends, dances and even a statue. In the rainy season from August to October, tourists everywhere flock to the river banks and turn on flashlights to watch the shrimp move.
The phenomenon of shrimp “parade” not only at night but also after heavy rains or fast flowing water, from 15:00 to 16:00 until dawn the next day. The most walking shrimp can be found at Kaeng Lamduan Falls, in the Yod Dom Reserve of Phu Jong-Na Yoi National Park. The number of parades depends on the amount of rain in that season, the more rain the more the shrimp will walk. Every night in the rainy season, at peak there will be hundreds, thousands of shrimps moving together.
This is a small freshwater shrimp species named Thai Kung Foy and Kung Kam Kon. They often go from rivers and streams flowing through undulating rocks to the top of Mount Phanom Dong Rak because there are clean water suitable for spawning.
According to Watcharapong Hongjamrassilp, a graduate student in biology at the University of California (USA), when swimming becomes difficult, terrestrial walking can help shrimp expand habitat. Today, the number of shrimp parades in Thailand is decreasing. Hongjamrassilp thinks that the cause may be tourism-related, and further research may help protect the species.
A rock-shaped structure with metal shrimp crawling upstream at the entrance of Kaeng Lamduan Falls.
Kaeng Lamduan has water flowing down large rocks and stretching for about 200 m, is part of Lam Dom Yai River. Surrounded by lush green lush Lamduan trees. Thanks to the pristine natural beauty and the phenomenon of shrimp walking on the rock, this place attracts a lot of tourists. Coming to Kaeng Lamduan, many tourists like to immerse themselves in cool water, enjoy the fresh air during the day and watch shrimp parade at night.
Kaeng Lamduan is about 116 km from Ubon Ratchathani provincial airport. Visitors should rent a vehicle to go from hotels, motels to the falls such as cars, song thaew. There is no fee to enter the waterfall, however, precautions should be taken to avoid Covid-19.