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(Not sure if a toile of Chinese labours would be... well... pretty, but history's history!)
Malaysia, or Malaya, used to be a huge exporter of tin. Kuala Lumpur started as a mining town in the 1800s and this was how it got its name. 'Kuala' means confluence. 'Lumpur' means mud. Because of the way tin was mined, with all the digging and sifting and power-hosing, all work sites were muddy places. Gigantic dredging machines were introduced during the 1900s, while under British colonial rule.
Many tin mines were owned by Malayan-Chinese, and the different tin mine bosses were constantly at war with one another. A point of interest...even though 'coolie' may not be of Chinese origin, but 'kuli' means 'bitter strength' in Mandarin.
A lot of golf/holiday resorts and fish farms in Kuala Lumpur (and all over Malaysia) today are built around and at ex-mining pools, and it is at these pools also that the bird population has flourished.