Revisit Endau Rompin State Park (29 – 31 Oct 2010)

Endau Rompin, straddling the Johor/Pahang border, is the second National Park in Malaysia, after Taman Negara. It covers an area of approximately 80,000 hectares of rich and exotic flora and fauna, encompassing the watershed of the rivers Endau and Rompin, from which it derives its name.
This was my third visit to Endau-Rompin State Park (ERSP), the first and second being more on a recce mission.  Together with 3 Committee Members from Nature Photographic Society of Singapore (NPSS), we organised a 3 days 2 night trip for 22 paid-up members.Although ERSP is a huge place, we spent most of our shootings at only 3 small areas ie. a wetland, a forest stream outside ERSP and a 50-metre tall waterfall inside ERSP.Wetland outside ERSP

This wetland was about 10 minutes drive from the entrance of ERSP. Dragonflies and damselflies are quite plentiful here such as Diplacodes nebulosa, Nannophya pygmaea, a look-alike Lestes praemorsus, a look-alike Pseudagrion australasiae, etc.

(A wetland outside Endau Rompin State Park)

Personally, the most unusual species that I phographed at this wetland was a look-alike Lestes praemorsus.  Unlike the bluish-grey Lestes praemorus that we see in Singapore, it has a pale greenish outlook.  Everything else such as size, appearance, habitat and its unique way of perching, are exactly the same as L. praemorsus.  It was quite skittish and after a few shots, it flew off and disappeared.  I have searched the internet but I could not find any image that matches this damselfly.  So, if you know the ID, kindly let me know.

(A look-alike Lestes praemorsus – 30 Oct 2010)

There was another damselfly species that looks like our Pseudagrion australasiae.  The female looks no different but the thorax of the male is greenish blue in colour instead of light blue from the Singapore version.  They were plentiful of this species here but it was difficult to get close to them when it was perching alone.  It was only when they were in mating position that I could take some decent shots of them.

(A look-alike Pseudagrion australasiae)

The smallest dragonfly, Nannophya pygmaea, can also be found here.  The males, immature males, females were all over the place and I believe most of us have some good shots of them.  I managed to get an improvement shot of an immature male.

(Immature male Nannophya pygmaea – 30 Oct 2010)

Small forest stream Outside ERSP
There was a small forest stream just 5 minutes drive from the above wetland where we found quite a no. of uncommon damselfly species.  These include Dysphaea dimidiata, Libellago aurantiaca, Vestalis amoena, Prodasineur humeralis, Prodasineura interrupta, Rhinagrion macrocephalum, Elattoneura analis, Sundacypha petiolata, etc.

(A small forest stream outside ERSP)

My most precious find has to be the Sundacypha petiolata.  It is an uncommon forest species that cannot be found in Singapore.  It likes to perch lowly just above the stream water under the shaded forest canopy.  Lighting was not ideal but this species was very cooperative.

(Sundacypha petiolata – 30 Oct 2010)

I also managed to get some improvement shots of a male Libellago aurantiaca here.  Unfortunately, my target of shooting the female did not materialised.  2 males were spotted but the females were nowhere to be seen.

(Male Libellago aurantiaca – 30 Oct 2010)

Rhinagrion macrocephalum is one of the most colourful damselfies that I have seen so far.  My first encounter of this species was at Panti Forest about 6 months ago.  I was happy to find it here and this time I got a better shot of it.

(Rhinagrion macrocephalum – 30 Oct 2010)

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Dragonfly (42) – Pornothemis starrei

Family : Libelluidae
Common Name : Mangrove Marshal
Status : Rare
Location : Punggol Forest

According to the Singapore Dragonflies Book, this is a rare mangrove dragonfly species spotted only at Pulau Ubin, Mandai & Lim Chu Kang.  The male has a black thorax & abdomen with dull greenish blue eyes. Females are said to have olive-coloured thorax.

(Male – Punggol Forest, 13 Nov 2010)

During this morning’s macro outing with many of my friends at Punggol forest, we were lucky to spot 2 males at a small muddy stream.   The surrounding was quite dark and this species preferred to perch lowly just above the water making it difficult to shoot.  Fortunately, it was quite cooperative allowing us to take some record shots.From the dorsal view, it looks like a bigger version of Chalybeothemis fluviatilis.  I hope I did not identify this species wrongly.

(Dorsal view – 13 Nov 2010)