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Gomantong Caves

Gomantong Caves

Described by WWF as "the best managed edible birds' nest cave in the world", Gomantong Caves has been the focus for birds' nests for centuries. Historical records have traced it as a source of this precious delicacy to the Chinese Emperor centuries ago.Two cave complexes are found in this intricate cave system. Simud Hitam is a five-minute walk from the Registration Centre and a picnic area. It is a more accessible cave with its roof soaring up to 90 meters high. A well-maintained boardwalk makes it easys to explore this dramatic cave with its specialised ecology. Simud Puteh is where the more valuable "white" saliva nests of the swiflets are found.

Gomantong Caves

Twice a year, licensed collectors risk their lives climbing to the roof of these cave complexes in a dangerous operation that involves only rattan ladders, ropes and poles precariously attached together. These caves are protected by the Wildlife Department which only allows the collection twice yearly. Catch the collectors in action between February and April, when the nests are first harvested just after the birds have built them. The next harvest is between July and September, when the new rebuilt nests, are abandoned after eggs have been laid and hatched.The Gomantong Caves is home to a rich range of birds with crested serpent eagles, kingfishers, asian fairy bluebirds and leafbirds. Don't be surprised if the magical sight of colourful butterflies suddenly surround you!

Gomantong Caves

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