Hulu Gombak-Sungai Lalang forest

Year of compilation: 2003

Site description
(I) Physical CharacteristicsHulu Gombak Forest ReserveThe Hulu Gombak Forest Reserve is located on the north side of the Kuala Lumpur-Bentong road at Mile 22. The road forms one boundary of the reserve, the Selangor-Pahang State boundary and Compartment 21 of the reserve the third. The topography is rough, mostly steep hillsides and narrow valley bottoms.Sungai Gombak, as main river, traverse the north part with tributaries such as Sungai Rumput, Sungai Pisang, Sungai Gapis and Sungai Tiang. Forest on terrain between 305 -610 m asl. The highest point is Gunung Bunga Buah (1,430 m asl). Areas below 152 m asl is developed. On the southern part, smaller rivers such as Sungai Seleh, Sungai Pemulas and Sungai Songlai are tributaries of Sungai Kelang which flows into the Klang Gates reservoir. The highest point in this section is Bukit Repin (1,341 m asl). The area is generally between 152 - 457 m asl. The forest reserve lies on granite and limestone overlaid by Quarternary alluvium and is covered in red-yellow ultisol soil. Klang Gates Wildlife SanctuaryThe Klang Gates Ridge is a massive quartzite vein which runs east of Kuala Lumpur in a west north-west to west direction from Sungai Batu to the Ampang Hills. The ridge is about six miles in length. Sheer cliffs, free of vegetation, rise above the surrounding forest, in some places with a rock face about 120 m high, in other places it is divided by wind gaps. The ridge top is a jagged knife edge, in some places only a few feet wide, with precipitous drops on either side. The highest point is 280 m asl. Lowland dipterocarp forest surrounds the ridge.(II) Climatic ConditionsThroughout the year, rainfall averages about 50 mm per week with heavier rains in November and December. The valley experiences dry season between January-February. Temperature averages about 21oC annually (McClure, 1974).

Key biodiversity
HIgh bird density and worth protection (rafiq)Important bird sites in sealngor

Non-bird biodiversity: Plants endemic to Klang Gates Ridge: Aleisanthia rupestris, Borreria pilulifera, Didymocarpus primulina, Eulalia milsumii, Ilex praetermissa and Tectaria rumicifolia(I) Globally threatened mammals (IUCN, 2002): ENDANGERED: Asian Elephant Elephas maximus*; Malayan Tapir Tapirus indicus, Tiger Panthera tigirs, South-East Asian White-toothed Shrew Crocidura fuliginosa; VULNERABLE: Golden Cat Catopuma temminckii, Serow Capricornis sumatraensis, Pig-tailed Macaque Macaca nemestrina, Common Porcupine Hystrix brachyura; NEAR THREATENED: White-handed Gibbon Hylobates lar, Siamang Symphalangus syndactylus, Hairless Bat Cheiromeles torquatus, Banded Leaf Monkey Presbytis melalophos, Long-tailed Macaque M. fascicularis, Pangolin Manis javanica, Smoky Flying Squirrel Pteromyscus pulverulentus, Marmoset Rat Haplomys longicaudatus; DATA DEFICIENT: Malayan Sun Bear Helarctos malayanus(II) Globally threatened reptiles (IUCN, 2002): ENDANGERED: Spiny Turtle Heosemys spinosa(III) Globally threatened plants (IUCN, 2002): CRITICAL: Sauropus elegantissimus, Hopea ferruginea; ENDANGERED: Shorea leprosula, S. faguetiana, Anisoptera laevis; VULNERABLE: Glochidion carrickii, Hydnocarpus humei, Erythroxylum kochummenii, Ilex praetermissa, Knema plumulosa; LOWER RISK/conservation dependent: Pentace strychnoidea, Macaranga quadricornis*Historically occurred in the Gombak valley. The last record was in October 1961.

Pressure/threats to key biodiversity
The proximity of Genting Highlands to Hulu Gombak Forest Reserve and Klang Gates Wildlife Sanctuary poses as a constant threat due to possible further high density development to meet its increasing popularity as an amusement and entertainment highland resort. The forest reserve is also bisected by the Karak Highway, which connects the central region of the peninsula to the east side. Existing and future infrastructure developments around the forest reserve may further fragment the area. Illegal settlement and agriculture is slowly eating into the margins for the forest reserve. Poaching has been reported due to the easy access into the forest reserve.

Protected areas
PROTECTION STATUSHulu Gombak Forest ReservePart of the forest was gazetted as a Wildlife Sanctuary in 1936 without proper definition of its boundaries. More recently, the forest reserve was proposed to be part of the Selangor State Park (estimated to be more than 110,000 ha), which consist of another 23 forested sites (TrEES, no date). It has been identified as a environmentally-sensitive area where development for the purpose of recreation, research and ecotourism is permitted. The Hulu Gombak VJR is classified as an IUCN Category Ia protected area.Klang Gates Wildlife Sanctuary

Habitat and land use
Hulu Gombak Forest ReserveStarting from near the Genting Sempah and passing through the VJR towards the summit of Gunung Bunga Buah, not less than five distinct plant associations are encountered. Climbing higher, the Seraya Ridge Forest gives rise to the Upper Dipterocarp Forest dominated by Shorea platyclados. In the valleys, Saraca taipingensis and Pometia pinnata dominates the Riverine Forests (Sungai Gombak) . With the slow reduction in number of dipterocarps with altitude, Montane Fagaceous and Lauraceous tress become predominant. On the very highest ridges, the most common trees are gnarled and stunted. Dacrydium sp. and numerous species of Ericaceae and Myrtaceae (Putz, 1978).Primary hill dipterocarp, upper dipterocarp(Wiedemann, A.M. 1969. A quadrat in the Ulu Gombak Jungle Reserve. MNJ 22: 159-163.)Klang Gates Wildlife SanctuaryTwo dominant plant communities exist in the wildlife reserve; vegetation on sandy heaths and lowland dipterocarp forest. On the ridge top, two trees predominate, Baeckea frutescens and Rhodoleia championii. Other conspicuous plants include Eurycoma longifolia and Fagraea auriculata. These trees grow on shallow, nutrient-poor, peaty soil and are small compared to the surrounding lowland forest. The exposed slopes of the ridge are covered with Eriachne pallescens. Aleisanthia rupestris clings stubbornly to the cracks and crevices in the rock face. On the more shaded rock faces, Davallia sp., Syngramma dayi, Hoya coronaria, Aeschynanthus parvifolia and Dischidia benghalensis can be found. In some places, orange patches of the terrestrial alga, Trentopohlia is encountered.In the shaded gullies, Myristica cinnomomea, Eugenia spicata and Dracaena may grow to a height of 10 m. Ficus deltoidea and the endemic Ilex praetermissa also grows here. The deeper peaty soil in the shaded gullies encouraged the growth of shrubs, ferns and thick layers of moss. Along the base of the ridge, the characteristic ridge top vegetation merges with the lowland forest consisting of Shorea spp.

Recommended citation
BirdLife International (2021) Important Bird Areas factsheet: Hulu Gombak-Sungai Lalang forest. Downloaded from on 24/01/2021.