FOREST RESEARCH INSTITUTE OF MALAYSIA (FRIM)
The Forest Research Institute of Malaysia is one of the most accessible bird watching sites and is situated about 16km northwest of Kuala Lumpur. Encompassing 600ha, it is made up of forest plantations, regenerating secondary forest and patches of remnant forests. More than 180 bird species have been sighted here, including about 26 migrant species. The birds found here are a mix of forest birds as well as open country and wetland birds. Five species of hornbills – White-crowned, Wreathed, Rhinoceros, Helmeted and Bushy-crested Horn bills, exist here. The impressive bird species list also includes ten woodpeckers, five broadbills, six barbets, two trogons and 16 species of bulbuls. Other forest birds found here are the Wallace’s Hawk Eagle, Crested Goshawk, Jambu Fruit Dove, Indian Cuckoo, Asian Fairy Bluebird, Red-throated Barbet, Buff-necked Woodpecker and the Black-and Red Broadbill. The much sought after Masked Fin foot and the very rare Javan Frogmouth occasionally visit the area. Among the trails where you can bird watch are the Keruing, Salleh, Rover track, Engkabang and the Canopy Walk trails. Not to be missed is the canopy walkway where birds may be seen in the early morning.
Forest Research Institute of Malaysia (FRIM)
Tel: +603 – 6279 7000
KUALA SELANGOR NATURE PARK
The Kuala Selangor Nature Park is located in the coastal town of Kuala Selangor and is managed by the Malaysian Nature Society. Its various habitats consist of a mangrove forest as well as a secondary forest, tidal mudflats, lakes and canals in the core area of the park. It is a haven for more than 160 bird species, some of which are unique to the coastal areas of Peninsular Malaysia. This park is one of the best areas to search for mangrove specialist birds including the Laced and Greater Flameback Woodpecker, Mangrove Pitta, Mangrove Blue Flycatcher, Mangrove Whistlerand the Great Tit. The keen bird watcher might spot the rare Lesser Adjutant Stork, the introduced Milky Stork, Changeable Hawk Eagle, Crested Serpent Eagle, Lineated Barbet and the Malayan Bronze Cuckoo. Those who venture out at night might encounter the Bufhj Fish Owl, Collared Scops Owl, Spotted Wood Owl and the Barred Eagle Owl. During the migration season, many migrant birds, including different species of shorebirds, make stopovers at the park. Early mornings and late afternoons are ideal for bird watching, particularly along the main trails as well as the coastal bunds by the main canals and mangrove forest. You can try the boardwalk built through sections of the mangrove forest. Within walking distance from the park is Bukit Melawati, a historically site where you can also look out for birds.
Kuala Selangor Nature Park
Tel: +603 – 3289 2294
Malaysian Nature Society (MNS)
Tel: +603 – 2287 9422
Located between Kuala Selangor and Sungai Besar, Tanjung Karang is mainly agricultural. Its paddy fields provide an excellent habitat for various species of birds as numerous irrigation canals feed them. This creates different habitats during and after the paddy planting seasons, which in turn attract various seasonal birds. During the paddy planting season, these artificial wetlands host waterbirds such as the Purple Heron, Cinnamon and Yellow Bitterns, Slaty-breastedRailand the Greater Painted Snipe. Many migratory birds spend the winter months here, using these areas as their feeding grounds. They include the Chinese Pond Heron, terns as well as the Great and Intermediate Egrets. After the harvesting season, the area attracts migratory raptors such as the Steppe Eagle, Greater Spotted Eagle, Imperial Eagle and the Black Kite. At least two species of harriers, the Eastern Marsh and Pied Harriers have been seen quartering over the harvested paddy fields. Apart from waterbirds and raptors, there are also open country birds in the surrounding areas. These include the Black-shouldered Kite, White-breasted Wood-Swallow, Baya Weaver, Blue-tailed Bee-eater, White-throated and Stork- billed Kingfishers as well as the Scaly-breasted and Chestnut Munias. During the migration season, the Common Kingfisher, Yellow Wagtail, several other species of shorebirds (waders) and occasionally, the Oriental Pied Horn bill, join resident birds. Although bird watching is possible all year round, the best time to visit the Tanjong Karang is during the bird migration season between September and April.
Kuala Selangor Nature Park
Tel: +603 – 3289 2294
Selangor Tourism Action Council
Tel: +603 – 5511 1122
Ulu Gombak (Gombak Road) in Selangor is part of the contiguous area linked to Bird Life International and the Malaysian Nature Society’s (MNS) Important Bird Area (IBA). Designated as MY10 Selangor State Park, this area with its mix of lowland dipterocarp and largely primary forest has a good variety of bird life. With an altitude of between 100m – 250m, this area is linked to Genting Highlands and boasts a bird list of about 120. This includes the globally threatened Blue Banded Kingfisher, Straw Headed Bulbul and the Mountain Peacock Pheasant.