Wednesday, November 25, 2015

Merlimau Jetty and Ricefields

Merlimau jetty. Small patch of mangrove forest. Spotted solitary common sandpiper walking on mudflats. Heard collared kingfisher & saw it fly off from edge of mangrove into the trees.

Was at Sungai Rambai Pond area earlier in the morning. It was already getting hot & sun was so glaring on the way to the Pond by 7.30am. Lesser Whistling Ducks were no longer at the pond area. Black Kites were out and about when we arrived at the pond. A Black-shouldered Kite circled near the pond before flying back towards oil palm plantation. Big flock of Black-backed (Purple) Swamphen were busy feeding within the pond. Chicks and Juvenile swamphen were seen too with latter in all-black plumage. Left pond by 9.30am as it was very hot by then and headed for Merlimau.

Fong Lin in photographic action at Merlimau ricefields. The Grey-Headed Lapwing was too far off for her to take a good picture of it. This Lapwing species was larger than the twenty (20) plus Red-Wattled Lapwings that were. Its Greyish duck-like head and black breastband were very visible. Grey-headed breeds in northeast China & Japan and mainland population is reported to be wintering in northern Southeast Asia, according to Wikipedia. To see this lone Grey-headed Lapwing in Merlimau ricefields was a big surprise for me. I checked with my birding guru from Malacca & Negeri Sembilan, Ang Teck Hin and he said it was possible as he had seen it before in the paddyfields of Sungai Balang, Muar.  

The paddyfields were filled with 20+ Red-Wattled Lapwings, calling out to each other with the solitary Grey-Headed Lapwing amongst them. Bigger flock of egrets were in a nearby patch that was being ploughed by a paddyfield tractor. The egrets followed the tractor with such zeal, eagerly waiting for the "food" that would be churned up by all that ploughing action.

Getting too hot by 11am, so Fong Lin and I left Merlimau Ricefields by then. We reached Muar by 11.45am after making a quick stop to buy some coconut water at one of the roadside stalls. We met up with Fanny, a Muarian herself who drove us to Parit Jawa which is well-known for Asam Fish dish. The restaurant at Parit Jawa was closed so we headed to Chun Hui Restaurant instead which was packed. We had to wait for over one hour for our dishes (including the Asam Fish Curry) and were too hungry to take a picture of the dishes. We finished the Curry, Fried fish, Beansprout and Steamed Otak in less than 20 minutes.



  1. Lesser Adjutants were also seen in Merlimau paddy fields, two of which were foraging in the paddy fields and two were soaring above edges of fields. Snipe spp was also seen along the edge of the fields. Only the head & upper body of Snipe was visible & it stood very still with minimal movements of its head. Walking along the rice fields, few pond heron spp flew off as well as a small flock of waders (around 5).

  2. Muar has very good otak which is wrapped in banana leaf and grilled. Can also steam otak using Kadok leave.


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