• 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,...

Purple Swamphen eats Kyllinga polyphylla flowering stalks

25 Oct 2014   in Feeding-plants No Comments »
Contributed by Jeremiah Loei
Purple Swamphen eats Kyllinga polyphylla flowering stalks The Purple Swamphen (Porphyrio porphyrio) [now Grey-headed Swamphen (P. poliocephalus)] is primarily a vegetarian, taking any and all parts of aquatic and semi-aquatic plants. At the same time it takes animal food that includes various invertebrates like small crabs, snails LINK, insects and their larvae, fish, frogs, lizards, snakes and nestlings. Its large bill is used to dig and pull plants while its prominently long toes come in useful in gripping vegetation and... Read More

My introduction to the Common Palm Civet

24 Oct 2014   in Fauna 2 Comments »
Contributed by YC Wee, Dr Vilma D'Rozario, Fung Tze Kwan & Xu Weiting
My introduction to the Common Palm Civet “One morning way back in July 2012, I noticed a lump of animal poop on top of the common wall with my next-door neighbour (above). As it looked uncommon, I photographed it. And as it was right next to the front gate I reluctantly removed it. “With the image of the poop I asked around and was told that it could be that of the Common Palm Civet (Paradoxurus hermaphroditus) (above). “In February the next year I came across pieces of the shell of the Giant... Read More

Little Egrets fishing

23 Oct 2014   in Feeding-vertebrates, Heron-Egret-Bittern No Comments »
Contributed by Dato’ Dr Amar-Singh HSS
Little Egrets fishing “I become quite used to seeing this mechanism of getting fish that is applied by many of the egrets and herons. A flock of 25-30 Little Egrets (Egretta garzetta garzetta) were hovering or skimming over the surface of a fish farm pond, with legs training in the water (above). “The majority was in breeding plumage with nice plumes (above). “Many were successful in diving in to obtain prey (above, below). “Other herons were also involved. One day the farmers might... Read More

ALBINO PLANTAIN SQUIRREL

22 Oct 2014   in Fauna, Videography 1 Comment »
Contributed by Dr Leong Tzi Ming
ALBINO PLANTAIN SQUIRREL “In August 2014, I first laid my eyes on this albino Plantain Squirrel (Callosciurus notatus) at a public park and was way too surprised and speechless to take any decent photographic records. I had good views of it, but it was particularly shy and secretive. Finally, our paths crossed again on the 19th of September and I was able to obtain documentary proof of this elusive squirrel as it was foraging cautiously on the ground (above). “A brief video of this... Read More

Golden-bellied Gerygone serenading

21 Oct 2014   in Videography, Vocalisation No Comments »
Contributed by Lim Shiang Han, Lim Mei Hsiang & Subaraj Rajathurai
Golden-bellied Gerygone serenading Earlier this year a bird appeared in Lim Shiang Han’s home. Perching in front of the balcony, it serenaded on and on. The next day it returned and again it serenaded. This went on for almost a month. The bird appeared like a sunbird but Shiang Han was not convinced that it was – as it “looks like a sunbird, but its beak is shorter and not as sharp. Also I have never heard sunbirds singing this way.” As curiosity about the identity of the songster got the better... Read More

Oriental Pied Hornbill – courtship feeding, Morinda citrifolia fruit

20 Oct 2014   in Courtship-Mating, Feeding-plants No Comments »
Contributed by Dato’ Dr Amar-Singh HSS
Oriental Pied Hornbill - courtship feeding, Morinda citrifolia fruit “I was out testing a news lens I had loaned, the Tamron SP 150-600mm f/5-6.3 VC. I choose to test it in the ‘worst’ possible setting – 7.30am on a gloom post rain morning, under some trees. I was trying to see if it could match the Nikon AF-S 80-400mm ED VR I have using recently. “I came across a pair of Oriental Pied Hornbills (Anthracoceros albirostris convexus) feeding on the fruit of the Morinda citrifolia (Great Morinda, Indian Mulberry, Noni, Mengkudu in... Read More

© Courting Behaviours of Black-and-Red Broadbill Pair

19 Oct 2014   in Courtship-Mating No Comments »
Contributed by Daisy O’Neill
© Courting Behaviours of Black-and-Red Broadbill Pair “Being one of 14 species worldwide, Black-and-red Broadbills (Cymbirhynchus macrorhynchos) remain one of tropical lowland forests, enigmatic birds we know so little about; and dwindling in sighting opportunities largely due to habitat loss. “They have striking deep, red-maroonish plumages and are blessed with cicada like quaky calls- probably their saviour from songsters’ trappers. “Having a huge, upper mandible of turquoise blue contrasting with ... Read More

WATERHEN PREENING AND SUNNING

18 Oct 2014   in Feathers-maintenance, Videography No Comments »
Contributed by Dr Leong Tzi Ming
WATERHEN PREENING AND SUNNING “On the 18th September 2014, I was able to creep up cautiously and observe the prolonged preening activity of White-breasted Waterhens (Amaurornis phoenicurus) at a local lotus pond (above). “As they preened themselves, the waterhens would regularly bob their stumpy tails up in a comical fashion. Even without a mirror, they seemed somewhat conscious of their own appearance. Perhaps they were preparing for a date with a fellow waterhen and paying particular... Read More

Red-whiskered Bulbul’s calls

17 Oct 2014   in Vocalisation No Comments »
Contributed by Dato’ Dr Amar-Singh HSS
Red-whiskered Bulbul's calls “This Red-whiskered Bulbul (Pycnonotus jocosus pattani) is locally endangered due to extensive trapping. It is usually found in the north but feral populations exist in the south. “See this article from Thailand that outlines the severity of the issue & risk of extinction: LINK. “Was wandering around the city to look for migrants when spotted two Red-whiskered Bulbuls. Their cheerful calls make them easy to spot. A sonogram and waveform of the common call is... Read More

Bats in my porch: 18. Adult females and their pups

16 Oct 2014   in Fauna, Videography No Comments »
Contributed by YC Wee
Bats in my porch: 18. Adult females and their pups It was a normal evening in the colony of Common Fruit Bats (Cynopterus brachyotis) roosting in the porch. The alpha male was doing his usual rounds checking on his females. There were two females, each suckling a pup, hanging some distance from each other. One female was making jerking movements with her limbs as if to dislodge the pup from her nipple. After much jerking she managed to free herself and flew off (above and video). The pup was left hanging alone (above).... Read More