Gunung Belumut Recreational Forest (Belumut) is a protected forest in central Johor. It is located about 30 km north-east of the town of Kluang
I got to know about Belumut only recently when Mr Tang Hung Bun, an odonata expert, shared with me a video (see below) of the Green Metalwing damselfly that he recorded at this place. He said that he enjoyed very much the dragonflies there.
This got me excited and I requested Tony to do a recce there with the intention of organizing a formal macro outing for members of Nature Photographic Society, Singapore. So, 5 of us (Tony, Allan, Ong, Foong, & I) set off early in the morning on 16 July 2011. It was about 7.30 am when we cleared the custom at Tuas second link. We drove towards Kluang and had our breakfast at coffee shop called “老巴剎“. We reach GBRF at about 10.30 am.
There is a big forest stream on the right side near the entrance of Belumut. The water was clean, swift flowing, shallow with many rocks of different sizes. However, at some areas, the water can be above knee level deep. From my experience, such habitat is an ideal place to find interesting and rare damselfly species.
It did not disappoint. Immediately, a male Euphaea ochracea was spotted perching at the edge of the stream. Not too far away, perching on the rocks in the middle of the water were a few beautiful Green Metalwings, both male and female.
We quickly set up our camera gears and soon we were all in the water. It was a big wide stream which can easily accommodate many photographers at any one time. As we moved around the stream, many damselflies were spotted. There were so many of them that there was no need for us to queue up to shoot.
After spending more than 3.5 hrs at this stream, we stopped for a short break at 2.30 pm where we ate breads as lunch that we bought at the coffee shop earlier. All of us were tired but happy with what we had photographed. As it was still early, we decided to walk further up the stream hoping to find more interesting subjects.
Most of the species that we spotted earlier can be found here too. We didn’t shoot here for long as most of us were already tired. Tony was too tired that he chose to take a nap at a nearby bench!