Birdwatching at Pantai Jeram, Selangor

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Pantai Jeram birdwatching

Birdwatching at Pantai Jeram is a great way for any birder wishing to dabble in shorebird watching. Pantai Jeram (English translation = Jeram Beach) is well-known amongst Selangor birders as a good spot for migratory shorebirds. Various migratory and resident coastal species occur here in the North-Central Selangor Coast IBA. Additionally, this spot is easily accessible, making it great for beginner and veteran birdwatchers alike.

Birdwatching at Pantai Jeram, Selangor

location for birdwatching
The birdwatching location in relation to Kuala Lumpur
Pantai Jeram location
Location of Pantai Jeram in relation to other nearby birding spots. The ash ponds are not publicly accessible.

Pantai Jeram is a popular weekend spot for locals and city folk. They mainly come here for fishing, shellfish collecting, gorgeous sunsets and family picnics. As a result, Pantai Jeram gets a bit crowded on weekends and public holidays, especially in the afternoon.

The best spot for birdwatching at Pantai Jeram is the southern stretch of beach, next to the aquaculture ponds. This part is usually devoid of people, apart from the occasional fishermen. The furthest section of the beach is frequently used by thousands of shorebirds as a high tide roosting spot. Seeing thousands of birds in one spot makes for a great spectacle! Remember that the birds may change their roosting spot depending on tides, weather, etc.  Therefore, the number of birds here may vary from day to day.

If you time your arrival correctly and approach the birds stealthily, relatively close views and good photos are possible. Ideally, arrive when the tide is still high. Some birds are usually present, waiting for the tide to recede. Refer to the timings section below.

Important: Please remember that the birds use the high tide period for downtime to rest and preen. Approach quietly, don’t get too close and avoid disturbing the birds unnecessarily. One option is to choose a spot a comfortable distance away and sit quietly. Allow the birds to approach by their own volition. You’ll get better views and photos this way.

How to go birdwatching at Pantai Jeram?:

Pantai Jeram map
Map of Pantai Jeram

Use the landmark ‘D’maton Corner’ on Google Maps or navigation apps. 

GPS coordinates: 3.219074, 101.305186

There’s a parking space available here. Take note that the restaurant is only open after lunch; therefore, the parking space is usually empty in the mornings. From the parking spot, head south (turn left while facing the sea) and walk about 400 m to reach the birding spot.

Pantai Jeram is roughly 60 km from Kuala Lumpur (1 – 1.5 hours drive time). The best way to reach here is via your own vehicle or rented one.

Public transport is very limited (a common problem in Malaysia). A bus service runs from Klang to Kuala Selangor, but the timings are impractical for birders. Alternatively, you can charter a taxi from Kuala Selangor, Kapar or Klang.

mudflats Pantai Jeram
The mudflats at Pantai Jeram. In this photo, the tide hasn’t fully receded yet.
Southern section of Jeram beach
The southern section of Pantai Jeram. The shorebird roosting area is around 400 m down this beach. The entire stretch is ‘birdable’.

What birds to look for when birdwatching at Pantai Jeram?

Shorebirds

Birdwatching at Pantai Jeram is good for a selection of common migratory shorebirds. The following species are easily seen and are quite numerous here:

  1. Common Redshank – sometimes in their hundreds/thousands.
  2. Tibetan and Greater Sand-Plovers – thousands roost here during high tide.
  3. Curlew Sandpiper
  4. Red-necked Stint
  5. Terek Sandpiper
Pantai Jeram Common Redshanks
Common Redshanks are indeed common at Pantai Jeram!

The species listed below are usually present in smaller numbers:

  1. Broad-billed Sandpiper
  2. Whimbrel
  3. Eurasian Curlew
  4. Common Sandpiper – usually encountered singly away from the large flocks
  5. Ruddy Turnstone

The following species are occasionally seen here:

  1. Sanderling
  2. Common Greenshank

The uncommon or rare shorebirds are usually absent here, but you may be lucky and encounter one!

Sanderling in flock
Examine the flocks at Pantai Jeram closely; you’ll never know what might be within! In this photo, the arrow indicates an uncommon species here, the Sanderling.
Non-shorebirds

The following migratory species are frequently seen here:

  1. Whiskered, Gull-billed and Little Terns are commonly seen while birdwatching at Pantai Jeram
  2. Black-capped Kingfisher. There is usually one bird in the southern part of the beach.

Resident birds include the following:

  1. Lesser Adjutant. The birds here seem to be used to the human crowds; thus, they occasionally approach quite close. 
  2. Collared Kingfisher
  3. Sunda Pygmy-Woodpecker
  4. White-bellied Sea-Eagle, Brahminy Kite. These raptors occasionally harass the shorebirds.
  5. A variety of herons and egrets (some of these are migrants, for example, the pond-herons)
Lesser Adjutant
The ungainly-looking Lesser Adjutant is easily seen and photographed at Pantai Jeram.

Check out the eBird checklists from my previous visits to this spot. It’ll give a better picture of what to expect here:

  1. Checklist from 15/3/2023
  2. Checklist from 3/12/2023
  3. Checklist from 1/1/2024 (New Year birding!)

Public facilities

  • Food options are present nearby, including the aforementioned D’maton Corner (only opens at 2 pm). Another place is the famous ‘Aroma Ikan Bakar’ seafood restaurant, which opens at 4 pm.
  • There are several small food stalls nearby that open before lunch.
  • The ever-popular ‘Shin Lok Coffee Shop’ is only 4 km away.
  • Public toilets are available at Pantai Remis, which is 2.6 km away.

Timing for birdwatching at Pantai Jeram

  • Migrant birds are typically present from late August until early May.
  • Check the tide charts well beforehand. I usually use tide-forecast.com and refer to Port Klang tide charts.
  • Timing is important to avoid arriving when the birds are already too far out: 
    1. Arrive at the highest tide and wait for the birds to arrive as the tide recedes. For example, if the highest tide is at 8 am, arrive at 8 am. 
    2. Alternatively, arrive 3-4 hours before high tide and observe the birds coming closer as the tide rises. For example, if the highest tide is at noon, arrive around 8 am.
  • Mornings are preferable, as afternoons are more crowded and frequently bring rain showers.

Photos of birds at Pantai Jeram

Pantai Jeram shorebird flock
The far southern end of Pantai Jeram is frequently used by thousands of shorebirds during high tide.
Sandpiper Broad-billed
Even a relatively small flock such as this contains several shorebird species. There are at least 6 species in this photo. Can you spot the Broad-billed Sandpiper?
Little Egret
This Little Egret almost looks overwhelmed by the number of shorebirds surrounding it.

More information

Read our articles on shorebird watching in Malaysia at the links below:

  1. Common Shorebirds of Malaysia
  2. The Malaysian Plover
  3. The Eurasian Curlew my closest encounter with this stately shorebird occurred at Pantai Jeram!
  4. Shorebird Watching in Malaysia –  a general guide, with tips on timing, optical equipment, birdwatching locations, etc.

Conclusion

Birdwatching at Pantai Jeram is great for a variety of common migratory shorebirds. Many resident birds are also present, such as the impressive Lesser Adjutant. Notably, the birds here are often not too far away, making photography very feasible. Moreover, Pantai Jeram is easily accessible with ample nearby public amenities. 

In summary, Pantai Jeram is undoubtedly worth visiting, especially for beginner birdwatchers wishing to step into shorebird watching.

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12 Comments on “Birdwatching at Pantai Jeram, Selangor”

  1. Thank you! Easily the best article on birding at a particular location that I’ve come across – clear and concise, and yet complete. It accomplishes birdwatching.asia’s mission of sharing information on birding, and then some. Having read your article, I can’t imagine anyone with exploratory birding on his/her mind not feeling fully armed to make this trip to Pantai Jeram. Bravo!

    1. Hi there Chris! Thanks very much for your kind and encouraging words, and for reading the article/website. I’m chuffed that you enjoyed the article; hopefully, it was of benefit to you.
      If you have the time, go on and do a spot of birdwatching at Jeram (or along the Selangor coast). The shorebirds are currently busy fattening up before their long migration back north, and some are starting to show their breeding colours.
      Once again, thanks very much!

      1. The wealth of detail in such a well laid out template demonstrates a remarkable empathy for the reader rarely seen in such for-free writing, let alone a birding post. I really appreciate the immense effort taken to gather all the info as well as to craft this article to the same high quality as the others that you have written. QObviously a labor of love. I would like to make a contribution to support the website maintenance but your “Buy us a coffee” upper limit (10 coffees?) is on the low side. If you don’t mind, let me know how I can make a slightly more meaningful one-time contribution.

        1. Hello Chris, thank you so much for your kind words and interest to make a donation for our little project here. I truly appreciate the thought and I am happy to share that we have added a ‘Donate to Birdwatching Asia’ on the right panel on this website. It is also under the ‘Buy us a Coffee’, on the right side. I have crafted this option for you or anyone else who would like to contribute to our site maintenance. With that, we would like to wish you a Happy Chinese New Year 2024 and happy holidays.

        2. Hi Chris! Thanks again for your encouraging and inspiring comments, as well as your continued support of the website. We really appreciate it.
          Happy holidays!

  2. Wonderful and helpful article! I hope to visit sometime soon. Having the details about exact location for parking, walking etc. is extremely helpful. I had been to the area once before but was a but uncertain about how to publicly access the best areas, and how the tide would impact the birds. Thank you!

    1. Hello Michael, thank you so much for the comment and glad to know that Ashraf’s article on Pantai Jeram has provided you and many others with the much required information. I hope that you can make it before the end of March as you should be able to catch some of the shorebirds in season there. Meanwhile, happy holidays and have a great week!

    2. Hi there Michael! I’m glad that you found the article helpful. Like you, when I first started going to Jeram, I didn’t really know where to look for the birds. The trips often end up rather underwhelming – more people than birds! Thus, I wanted to write something that provides the necessary info for birders, making the birding there more enjoyable.
      I sure hope you give Pantai Jeram another go – now is a good time to see the shorebirds as they’re fattening up before their long migration.
      Thanks for commenting and reading the website!

  3. A follow-up question: also just read the helpful article on Sungai Serdang. Comparing the two locations, which do the birds tend to be at a closer distance? I have yet to buy a spotting scope, so unless I find other birders going at the same time will just be binocs and a high-zoom point and shoot camera for ID. I’m curious to know if the birds tend to be closer at one location vs the other (given the same tide)? It seems like perhaps the variety of species may be greater at Sungai Serdang? Thanks again

    1. Hi Michael, thanks for the question.
      The birds at Pantai Jeram tend to be closer, especially at the roosting spot highlighted in this article. If you’re patient, and approach slowly and carefully, you may be able to get good photos. Check my article on the Eurasian Curlew – I was sitting at one spot with my camera, and the curlew came quite close (about 20 – 25 metres).
      At Sungai Serdang, the birds are usually further away; however, occasionally the birds do alight/fly relatively close by. The rarer species (example: Nordmann’s greenshank) tend to be quite far away though. From my experience, a scope is very recommended at Sg. Serdang, although a high zoom point & shoot may work ( I don’t use one, so I have no experience with this).
      As for variety of species, Sg. Serdang is definitely better – with good chance to spot some uncommon species. The birds at Pantai Jeram are usually the common species, but you never know what you might stumble across!
      Hope this answered your question. Once again, thanks for checking out the website.

  4. One additional question regarding Sg. Serdang. You mentioned that the access road is narrow and there is just the one small area to park at the end. Would driving a larger vehicle like a Proton Exora be impossible to turn around at the parking space? I don’t want to drive out and then get stuck so that I have to back out the whole way!
    The photo looked like it would be sufficient space, but sometimes the scale is hard to judge. Would appreciate any further thoughts, as I hope to visit soon.

    1. Hi Michael! Sorry for the late reply.
      I’m not sure how tightly the Proton Exora can turn, but I’ve seen Myvi, Axia and Ford Ranger go there. I’ll be going to the location on 26/2/24 – I’ll update the article with a new photo to show some scale.

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