• Water(hen) in the (bird) brain

    Water(hen) in the (bird) brain

    “Our good web-master once posted an article of mine on this website about attracting kingfishers to urban gardens LINK. “As a follow-up to that, I decided to do this...

  • The Birds of Singapore – an online book

    The Birds of Singapore – an online book

    In May 1943, GC Madoc published “An Introduction to Malayan Birds.” He wrote his manuscript in Singapore’s Changi Prison where he was interned when the country fell into the...

  • Videocam: A powerful tool for studying birds

    Videocam: A powerful tool for studying birds

    1. Collecting birds: In the 19th century the equipment needed to study birds was the gun. Another skill necessary was a good stuffing technique in order to preserve the specimens....

  • Documenting bird calls and songs

    Documenting bird calls and songs

    Many local birdwatchers are able to recognise the birds behind the songs. However, interest in most cases ends there except for a few who make basic recordings. Erik Mobrand...

  • Should attempts be made to tame wild birds?

    Should attempts be made to tame wild birds?

    The first part of the series by aviculturist Lee Chiu San deals with whether birds can be tamed and whether they will remain tamed. The second part looks at whether it is...

  • Postings your observations and images

    Postings your observations and images

    Why should you post your observations and images? Southeast Asian birds are poorly studied in terms of behaviour and ecology. By posting your observations (and this include...

  • Nature Society: The struggle for Singapore’s nature areas

    Nature Society: The struggle for Singapore’s nature areas

    The above paper has just been published. Nature in Singapore is a peer-reviewed, online journal that publishes articles on the flora and fauna (e.g., biology, botany, zoology,...

Oriental Reed-warbler and its prey

02 Sep 2014   in Feeding-invertebrates No Comments »
Contributed by Dato’ Dr Amar-Singh HSS
Oriental Reed-warbler and its prey “I was pleasantly surprised that this Oriental Reed-warbler (Acrocephalus orientalis) allowed close observation of its foraging behaviour for an extended period; the first time in my life I left a Reed-warbler rather than the other way around. “During the migration period, prey has been documented to be taken by aerial sallying (uncommon) and predominantly by gleaning from foliage and stems of plants. Details on prey taken using the latter method is... Read More

Bats in my porch: 11. Figs

01 Sep 2014   in Fauna No Comments »
Contributed by YC Wee
Bats in my porch: 11. Figs Figs LINK are one of the favourite food of the Common Fruit Bats (Cynopterus brachyotis) LINK. Shortly after sunset, these bats seek out fruiting fig trees using their large eyes and strong sense of smell – fruit bats do not echolocate. Circling round the tree, they settle on a selected bunch of figs. Once a ripe fig has been selected, they fly back to the roost to eat it (above). Eating involves crushing the fig to extract the juice and discard the compacted mass.... Read More

A dead chick in the garden…

31 Aug 2014   in Miscellaneous No Comments »
Contributed by YC Wee
A dead chick in the garden… In late May, I found a dead chick lying on the ground in my garden (above). Only a few ants were around to feed on the chick. How it got there is a puzzle. It was definitely not pushed out of the nest, as all the trees were some distance away. A predator could have dumped it there. But then the dead chick was intact, no parts missing. So what was the intention of the predator, if not to feed on it? I have not been able to identify the dead chick. I have images of a two-day... Read More

Asian Openbill – other prey consumed

30 Aug 2014   in Feeding strategy, Feeding-invertebrates, Videography No Comments »
Contributed by Dato’ Dr Amar-Singh HSS
Asian Openbill – other prey consumed “The Asian Openbills (Anastomus oscitans) feed mainly on large molluscs, especially the freshwater Golden Apple Snail Pomacea canaliculata LINK. “At this site (Malim Nawar Wetlands, Perak, Malaysia; Habitat: Extensive ex-tin mining area with pond/lakes, wetlands, fish farming), their primary feeding pond has recently been drained and now covered with grass and muddy patches. “They continue to feed in large numbers (130-150) at the site. Although they feed on... Read More

Bats in my porch: 10. The alpha male

29 Aug 2014   in Fauna 1 Comment »
Contributed by YC Wee & Dr Leong Tzi Ming
Bats in my porch: 10. The alpha male The above male Common Fruit Bat (Cynopterus brachyotis) was photographed at 2240 hours on 30th July 2014. He was one among the small colony that arrived in the porch at around 1800h to roost, continuing to remain roosting until well past midnight. The two spotlights were then on and this apparently encouraged the colony to remain until then. Usually, in the absence of the lights the colony dispersed by around 2000 hours... Read More

© Insights To Blue-winged Pittas Part 4

28 Aug 2014   in Courtship-Mating, Feeding strategy No Comments »
Contributed by Daisy O'Neill
© Insights To Blue-winged Pittas Part 4 Feeding Behaviours: Breeding Pittas “My follow-up observations at Itam Dalam Forest Reserve (IDFR) concluded those regular sightings of Blue-winged Pitta (Pitta moluccensis) pair were no other than Pitta2 and Pitta3. “Sometimes the pair foraged together. At other times, they fed independently but within ear-shot of each other. Identification was made easier by a boar tick studded behind male Pitta2’s left eye. I name Pitta2 ‘Ticky’ (above left). Female... Read More

Stripe-throated Bulbul after a bath

27 Aug 2014   in Feathers-maintenance No Comments »
Contributed by Dato’ Dr Amar-Singh HSS
Stripe-throated Bulbul after a bath In the late morning of 8th July 2014, Dato’ Dr Amar-Singh HSS encountered a Striped-throated Bulbul (Pycnonotus finlaysoni finlaysoni) having a bath in Malaysia’s Cameron Highlands. The two images accompanying this post show the bulbul just after the bath. No doubt the bird will be busy drying itself and preening its feathers to maintain them in top conditions. The location was a public road through the primary forest at 1600m ASL.... Read More

Vinous-breasted Starling at Pasir Ris Park

26 Aug 2014   in Species 2 Comments »
Contributed by Kwong Wai Chong
Vinous-breasted Starling at Pasir Ris Park “The Vinous-breasted Starling (Acridotheres burmannicus) was not recorded in the Singapore checklist but had been spotted sporadically. First time I spotted the Vinous-breasted Starling was at Pasir Ris Park on 21 June 2014. It was rather skittish and flew away from view after I had my record shots (above, below). “Almost 2 months later, from 10 August, the Vinous-breasted Starling was spotted at a different parts of the park. Not sure whether this could be the... Read More

Bats roosting in my porch: 9. Mating

25 Aug 2014   in Fauna, Videography No Comments »
Contributed by YC Wee & Dr Leong Tzi Ming
Bats roosting in my porch: 9. Mating It was on the evening of 2nd August 2014 that the mating of the Common Fruit Bat (Cynopterus brachyotis) was documented. At around1800 hours there was a lone bat roosting in the porch (above). This was unusually early as they normally start to arrive half to an hour later. By 2040 hours there was a small colony of 13 bats. Most of the bats were either actively grooming themselves or simply hanging quietly. Usually there would be one bat with its wings extended nearly all... Read More

Ruby-cheeked Sunbird – nest building

24 Aug 2014   in Nests No Comments »
Contributed by Dato’ Dr Amar-Singh HSS
Ruby-cheeked Sunbird – nest building “I have seen quite a number of the nests of the Ruby-cheeked Sunbird (Anthreptes singalensis interposita). The majority at this location are situation adjacent to a river. “This nest was located 2.5 meters up in the outer foliage of a tree (above left, showing an overview of the nest). The planned opening is situated posterior (above right: a rear view of the nest). Nets material included spider web, dead, dried leaves, tree bark, fibrous material (roots or dried... Read More