Return To Endau Rompin Part 1

Posted: May 6, 2010 in butterflies, holidays, macro photography, wide angle photography

Like the salmon that flows upstream to die and the wandering turtle that comes back home, my heart eventually found its way back to a small cleft of rock in the middle of a rushing river that runs through the heart of Endau Rompin.
And around that small hiding place from the boisterous current, the massive singing forest that flanks and surrounds the river at every bend and turn. 






Unlike the soaked mud trails and burgeoning river of the past year’s rains, Endau Rompin took on a clean after-washed sunny complexion, radiantly shining through 3 days of our stay.

Butterflies flutter in thick numbers in the trees and on the roads, busy, variant and inconsistent as a community patchwork quilt.  The Sawtooths and large graceful Helens have mostly disappeared, replaced by psychedelic zipping Orange Albatrosses on the hot sand and the haunting pale soft sprinkling of Plain Puffins in the shadows of the trees. 

In the frenzy of feeding, butterflies line and crowd the mineral deposits, jostling with each other against a permanent blue pop art background of jays.

 A Blue Jay stands camouflauged against a troop of Great Jays.  Can you spot it?

The Jays flutter the ends of their wing tips like the incessant shivering of a coy lady’s fan, gathering, encircling and moving in synchrony with each other, forming a stage of dancers supporting the highlights of the day’s performance.

At the foot of the waterfalls, bright red gems of Malay Red Harlequins beset the lower echelons of the foliage, sitting daintily and motionless, waiting to be chanced upon by the wandering trekker and photographer, accompanied by the less colourful Red Bush Brown. 

The Red Bush Brown pales in comparison to the brilliantly coloured Malay Red Harlequin.

In the early hours of the morning, the beautifully draped Terinos clarissa malayanus grace the plain covers of barks and leaves with its robes of purple, red and blue, gently fanning its strongly falcate forewings, before disappearing back into the darkness, replaced in turn by the magnificent striped backs of the Malayan Zebra.

The Terinos clarissa malayanus is observed sunning itself open winged in the early hours of the morning (8:30 – 9:30a.m. thereabouts) and then disappeared into the shades of the forest cover when the sun was hotter. 









Out on the dried mud trails, little Pierots, all decked in a variety of speckles and stripes crowd together to gossip on the day’s happenings, moving together like nomads over the desert, dwarfed and harassed by storms of maplets and the occasional Tailed Jay, shimmering rows of green emerald on its black velvet wings.









Night gowns the trees in shades of blue and the forest floor awakes and slithers in the shadows across water, rocks and grass, in pursuit or from pursuit, dancing a dangerous tango complete with brilliant costumes, songs and fangs.

Prey and predator both establish a territory within the same habitat, the small planked bridge over the clear river waters.

Meanwhile artificial light emanating from rooms, kitchens and torches attract strange creatures of the night, taxing the imagination and filling the night with wonder.

When day breaks, the forest leaves gifts at your doorstep, in the form of squat, big-eyed, crepuscular butterflies which sully the line of conventional differences between the sunshine-loving graceful floating butterfly and the night-loving furtive lurking moth.

Typical floaty butterfly above versus speedy Awls below.

Defying their feminine reputation, they burst with great speed and wear their no-frills wings angled out like the wings and tail of a fighter plane.  Serious business on their furry faces and straight antennae, they burst off and elude even the shutter of the eager camera, leaving disappointed photographers in their wake.

(To be continued… stick around like a Jay for more).

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  1. fatcat says:

    lovelovelovelove the groups shots of the butterflies, so pretty! (well, they're all pretty, but those even more so!)

  2. Thank you! 😀 It's very rare to see butterflies in these numbers over here. So was elated when they turned up in throves in Malaysia! 😀

  3. Trailblazer says:

    A chorus line of wings, ready to dance off stage. Splendid, as always.

  4. Thank you! 😀 It was therapeutic just lying on my belly in the mud with my camera just watching them!

  5. Trailblazer says:

    So much better than drugs or basket weaving. I know today is hard for you, so many of us are motherless this day. Keep doing what brings you, and us, so much joy . . . and wonderment.

  6. Lauri says:

    Breathtaking!!!How I love your posts!The group shots are so wonderful! 🙂

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