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Malaysian wild chestnut (berangan liar) maybe?

Found these while walking in the jungle near KL

We were walking Sox in the bush one weekend when we stumbled upon what looked like wild chestnuts (berangan liar) on the forest floor. I looked up and the trees are all rather tall. Scattered around are the fruits, some still in the pods. I have seen chestnuts fruits in Malaysian jungle before but these ones do not have spiny shells.

Continue reading Malaysian wild chestnut (berangan liar) maybe?

A lagoon of lotus plants on Perak River; Part V

We paddled through a lagoon covered in lotus

We were out paddling our kayaks and canoes on Perak river when we chance upon an area covered with lotus. It was a rather hidden spot, shallow and mystical. While we saw some of the flowers blooming, many had withered away and some dying.

Continue reading A lagoon of lotus plants on Perak River; Part V

Wild water buffalo on Perak River; Part IV

Wild buffalos along Sungai Perak

We were told that we may come across wild animals as we paddled down Sungai Perak. We were hoping to see elephants (there has been sightings at some areas along Sungai Perak), we were however greeted by a heard of wild water buffalos. Wild water buffalos along Sungai Perak, who would have thought!

Continue reading Wild water buffalo on Perak River; Part IV

A Langkawi resort with jungle animals

I have stayed in many resorts but this is probably the only Langkawi resort with jungle animals that I have ever stayed in! This resort is really something.

It wasn’t the rooms, the service and not even the food that impressed me. Rather it is the amount of wildlife I saw during my stay in the resort. The animals weren’t in cages. They were roaming around free going about with their usual activities without much care about the people around them.

Continue reading A Langkawi resort with jungle animals

Snakes Malaysia; A (too) close encounter with an Ular Kapak Hijau

The Indonesian Pit Viper

The Indonesian Pit Viper

I recently had a (really) close encounter with one of Malaysian snakes that is super-poisonous it seems. The irony of it all was that I (nor anyone from the group I was with) realize how potent this snake is. After innocently posting a picture of the snake on this blog, my good bush friend Pak Abu manages to identify it as a Pit Viper. Now Pit Viper s doesn’t sound friendly at all do they?

Continue reading Snakes Malaysia; A (too) close encounter with an Ular Kapak Hijau

Jungle animals of Perlus Waterfall…Part 4

Compared to the jungle plants of Perlus waterfall, I would have to say that the tropical jungle animals of Perlus waterfall have to be the highlight of this trip. This second visit to Perlus waterfall showcased some of the most amazing tropical animals I have ever seen.

We didn’t have to explore off the trail to see these animals. They were like ‘exposing’ themselves to be seen, wanting to be photographs and appreciated. This is especially true for this particular snake. Not only was it lying low on some small plants but it was also right in the middle of the trail. With so many people walking pass it (some probably had a brush with it), the snake stood its ground and did not move much.

This snake is beautiful!

This snake is beautiful!

Continue reading Jungle animals of Perlus Waterfall…Part 4

Tropical jungle plants of Perlus Waterfall…Part 3

There are a lot of interesting jungle plants on the trail to Perlus waterfall. A botanist will surely have a good time exploring this jungle for its entire flora splendor. Nature guide John Chan pointed out several types of Senduduk besides a variety of other useful plants.

One part of the trek that really stood out is this particular area with loads of bamboo. It’s like walking into a world of bamboo…like the scene from the movie ‘Crouching Tiger, ‘Hidden dragon ’. Bamboo everywhere you look.

It’s interesting to find out why the high concentration on bamboo in this area. Perhaps it is because of the soil and the terrain. As we walk further we come upon an opening with bamboos criss-crossing the entire trail.

The bamboo version of ‘Entrapment’?

Bamboo is probably another one of the most useful plant one can find in the jungle. In a survival situation, bamboo can be used to obtain drinking water, build shelter, start fire and even provide food. The shoots of young bamboo plant is a popular local food, known locally as Rebung.

A Rebung

The following are some interesting jungle plants I manage to capture during the trek.

Not a clue what plant this flower belong to

The shoots of a bamboo

Nice flower

A close-up of the flower

This flower looks like something from an alien movie

Ouch…not something you’d want to hang on to

Symbiosis or parasite?

Okay…okay…the photos are not the best. Hey…I am learning. In any case, there’s simply too many things to just stop and photograph. I doubt if I will ever be able to arrive at Perlus waterfall that way. I reckon it would be even more interesting if I can be with John at the front of the walking party to learn as much from him. Throughout, I was behind…taking on the ‘sweeper’ role as a cover-up to my lack of stamina catching-up with the rest.

Next…Tropical jungle animals of Perlus Waterfall

Perlus waterfall, PART 2

My leech sock and my boots

My leech sock and my boots

This is a continuation to my recent Perlus waterfall trip. After my first trip to Perlus, I realize that I had to take extra gear with me. Leeches are aplenty along the trail to Perlus. They are everywhere. So…leech sock is a must this time. I make do without socks, tucked my pants in and had the leech socks up.

Yup…I have my jungle boots on. It’s the only pair of shoes that will actually give me the support and grip that I need on the trail. The trail is mostly wet, muddy and slippery. Other things I packed extra for this trip was my UHF radio and my GPS. I want to record the route as much as I can.

Cars were parked at local Orang Asal’s house. Sali was not around but his porcupine friend finally decides to show itself. It came out, though I doubt to greet the morning’s visitors, grabbed some fruits and quickly ran back to its hole in the cement walled ‘compound’.

Click Nature Guides Malaysia to look for nature guides all over Malaysia.

Continue reading Perlus waterfall, PART 2

Perlus waterfall, PART 1

Okay…in one of my previous blog entry, I was preparing myself for a hike into Perlus waterfall with Nature Guide John Chan. This is my second time going into Perlus and I am all excited and at the same time a bit scared as we will actually be accompanying a group. My concern weren’t really about safety and group management but more of whether I can catch up with them. My stamina as a 5 days week pencil pusher isn’t exactly something to be proud about.
My ‘first’ experience with Perlus waterfall can be described as exhausting. I remembered upon arriving at the waterfall, I spent at least 20 minutes napping on a rock. Though I am not sure whether it is due to the fatigue of perhaps due to the big packet of nasi lemak I just whacked when I got there. It felt like heaven either way. The rock I choose was in the middle of the river, flat enough for me to lie down comfortably but perhaps a bit short for my height. The sound of cascading water and the cool mist filled breeze is simply awesome. I was in heaven.

I jumped on the opportunity to join John on this trip. Learning from my first experience, I was in a away more prepared this time. I was determined to keep the leeches out this time. I had all my gear packed the night before. As usual, Meun feels that its an overkill but I’d rather bring whatever I need than having to look for alternatives later on. 6 am the following morning, the Vitara is packed up and I am on the way to Hulu Langat.

Continue reading Perlus waterfall, PART 1

Kelah Sanctuary at Kuala Marong, Endau Rompin

If you ever get the chance to visit Endau Rompin National Park, try to make a detour to the Kuala Marong Kelah sanctuary. This is yet another wonderful place in tropical rainforest Malaysia where you can witness first hand the famed Malaysian Mahseer in its natural habitat.

I visited Kuala Marong during a trip to Endau Rompin organized by the Nature Guide SIG from the Malaysia Nature Society. Kuala Marong was part of the itinerary and its one of the highlights (for me at least) of the whole trip. I rarely miss the chance to see the Kelah, even if they are in fish tanks!

Unlike the Sungai Petang Kelah sanctuary that is rather heavily guarded by park rangers, Kuala Marong seems to be a bit ‘easy’ for people to access to. There were people camping just beside the river when I was there. There were also quite many people trying to ‘swim’ with the fishes.

I get to see them Kelah fishes from a specially built viewing platform. The water was crystal clear and the fishes can be seen gracefully swimming around waiting for food from human visitors. There wasn’t really that many Kelah but they were huge ones. I saw not only the Kelah but also Sebarau, Lampam and Tengas.

The fishes at Kuala Marong

Kuala Marong is a place where two rivers meet. Further down from where the fishes are is a place for visitors to swim. I didn’t hesitate of course. The place was teaming with fishes. No Kelah came near but there were definitely some curios Lampam and Sebarau. Some were even curious enough to nibble my toes! A few of my friends joined me in the water. They had some bread with them, which the fishes gladly ate up. I know it’s not a good thing to be feeding the fishes but sometimes people just can’t help it! Don’t blame them really.

Me and an Orang Asal guide at Kuala Marong

The Kuala Marong Kelah sanctuary is most accessible via the eastern entrance to the park, often referred to as the Kampung Peta way. To enter via this entrance, it is best that you hire 4WD services from the Kahang town nearby. The access road is unpaved and winds through endless oil palm plantations.

Read more about my rainforest adventures in Endau Rompin National Park.