Birdwatching at Old Gombak Road

Spread the love

Old Gombak Road Birdwatching

On 29 December, I did some birdwatching at the old Gombak Road (Jalan Gombak Lama) that leads to Genting Highlands, Bentong and the east coast of Malaysia.

This is not my first time here as I have visited this place a few times, and I find birding here quite interesting because of the species of birds that can be spotted.

Birdwatching at Old Gombak Road

Usually, I will come with either the MNS Bird Group or with some birding friends, and I will park along an open area of this road. I will start walking along the old road to look for birds.

However, one must be extra careful because there are a lot of cars, vans and lorries speeding up and down from time to time. So, usually, we will start clear from the road.

Jalan Gombak Lama Bird Watching
What the old Gombak Road looks like.

On my last trip here on 28 December 2022, construction is now ongoing at several sections of the Old Gombak Road, and when I looked at the signboards, it was the ECRL development. ECRL is the East Coast Rail Line project which has been on and off.

Now that a new government has formed in late 2022, the ECRL project is back on. Therefore, there are several sections under construction. This place will probably get tarnished from a peaceful and lonely old road.

Once you start to explore this area, you may see pristine primary rainforest, which I think is secondary forest now and recently, in 2022, many sites have been cleared for the construction of the ECRL railway line.

But when you explore closely, you may chance upon fruiting trees with small berries that attract many barbets, bulbuls and thrushes. The best are the fruiting macaranga trees, which attract more bulbuls, white-eyes and flycatchers, including the rare blue-and-white flycatcher in Selangor, which is my lifer.

The best time to visit Old Gombak Road is also in the morning at around 7.30 AM, and you can spend about 3-4 hours birding here. Usually, I will leave by noon and head back to the city.

Malaysia White Blue Flycatcher
This photo of the Blue and White Flycatcher was taken at the Old Gombak Road in Selangor.

Birds at Old Gombak Road

So, over the few times that I have come here, there have been only good experiences as there are exciting birds spotted, and even lifers for me. Below is my bird list, which I also uploaded to my eBird checklist for the Old Gombak Road.

  1. Raffles’s Malkoha
  2. Black-bellied Malkoha
  3. Silver-rumped Needletail
  4. Plume-toed Swiftlet
  5. Whiskered Treeswift
  6. Changeable Hawk-Eagle
  7. Rufous-bellied Eagle
  8. Rhinoceros Hornbill
  9. Bushy-crested Hornbill
  10. Blue-eared Barbet (Black-eared)
  11. Red-throated Barbet
  12. Yellow-crowned Barbet
  13. Gold-whiskered Barbet
  14. Gray-and-buff Woodpecker
  15. Buff-necked Woodpecker
  16. Buff-rumped Woodpecker
  17. Crimson-winged Woodpecker
  18. Blue-crowned Hanging-Parrot
  19. Black-and-yellow Broadbill
  20. Lesser Cuckooshrike
  21. Large-billed Crow
  22. Grey-headed Canary-Flycatcher
  23. Common Tailorbird
  24. Rufous-tailed Tailorbird
  25. Black-headed Bulbul
  26. Spectacled Bulbul
  27. Scaly-breasted Bulbul
  28. Black-crested Bulbul
  29. Stripe-throated Bulbul
  30. Yellow-vented Bulbul
  31. Red-eyed Bulbul
  32. Hairy-backed Bulbul
  33. Arctic Warbler
  34. Hume’s White-eye
  35. Velvet-fronted Nuthatch
  36. Siberian Thrush
  37. Orange-headed Thrush
  38. Asian Brown Flycatcher
  39. Oriental Magpie-Robin
  40. Blue-and-white Flycatcher (Lifer)
  41. Mugimaki Flycatcher
  42. Orange-bellied Flowerpecker
  43. Red-throated Sunbird
  44. Long-billed Spiderhunter
  45. Little Spiderhunter
  46. Yellow-eared Spiderhunter
  47. Spectacled Spiderhunter
  48. Grey-breasted Spiderhunter
  49. Asian Fairy-bluebird
  50. Lesser Green Leafbird
  51. White-rumped Munia
  52. Gray Wagtail

 

Sri Maha Vanna Muniswarar Temple Gombak KL
This is the Sri Maha Vanna Muniswarar Temple at Batu 16, Jalan Gombak Lama.

Birding Caution

  • Snakes – Here are some tips for birders and bird photographers; because this is a secondary forest, you should always be cautious when going into the bush areas. Some parts have trails, and keep an eye out for snakes.
  • Dogs/Rain – If it rains, there will be leeches, so take precautions if you plan to go to the river area or the trails. Also, the place can be slippery so take care when exploring the area. Sometimes there are wild dogs around, but these are usually the Orang Asli dogs, mostly harmless.
  • Monkeys – There are many long-tailed macaques that I have seen in the area, so if you carry food, be cautious when you eat. Avoid eating around these macaques, as they can be pretty aggressive for food. Other than that, I would not walk into a group of them if they were in front of me.
  • Safety – There have been secluded cases of robbers here by petty thieves; therefore, it is not recommended to visit alone. If you plan to go, at least go in a small group, a minimum of two people.

Old Gombak Road (Jalan Gombak Lama)

  • Address: Jalan Gombak, Federal Route 68, Selangor
  • Search for: Gombak Aborigines Hospital on Waze or Google Maps
  • Directions: From the Hospital, drive another 3-4 miles further
  • Parking: By a safe and open area of the road

 

Kampung Orang Asli Batu 16
The signboards show the Kampung Orang Asli Batu 16 along the Old Gombak Road.

Conclusion to Birdwatching at Old Gombak Road

The location is relatively easy; you need to use Waze or Google Maps to locate the Sri Maha Vanna Muniswarar Alayam Temple and head along that road. The best locations to look for birds are after Batu 14 (Mile 14), usually at Batu 15 and 16 (Mile 15 & 16) near the Ulu Gombak Field Study Centre.

This is a reminder that if you go, there are no public toilets or F&B facilities, so you must come prepared. Also, there are a lot of cyclists that use this road regularly, so keep a lookout for them. Happy birdwatching along Jalan Gombak Lama!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *