• 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,...

Carnaby’s Cockatoos in a Perth backyard

23 Aug 2014   in Parrots No Comments »
Contributed by Ilsa Sharp & Dr Eric Tan
Carnaby's Cockatoos in a Perth backyard “A wonderful surprise, right outside my living room window at 9.30am today! Three of the large and noisy, rare and endangered Carnaby’s Black Cockatoos (Calyptorhynchus latirostris), with their distinctive white cheek patches and white-flashed tails, getting stuck into the brilliant orange candle-like (lingam-like, you could say!) flowers of my native Banksia shrub (Banksia ashbyii). “I have never seen them so close to the house although they are often around the... Read More

Bats in my porch: 8. Female with young

22 Aug 2014   in Fauna No Comments »
Contributed by YC Wee & Dr Leong Tzi Ming
Bats in my porch: 8. Female with young By late July 2014 a lone adult female Common Fruit Bat (Cynopterus brachyotis) with a baby clinging to her arrived one morning to roost in the porch (above). The female is recognised by her yellow-orange collar, as compared to the dark orange-red male collar LINK. Juveniles lack such a collar. The baby was actively suckling and excess milk leaked onto the floor, leaving whitish stains (below). Note the engorged nipples of the adult female. The pair was stubborn, not... Read More

Purple Swamphen preening

21 Aug 2014   in Feathers-maintenance No Comments »
Contributed by Dato’ Dr Amar-Singh HSS
Purple Swamphen preening “After a bath, the Purple Swamphen (Porphyrio porphyrio viridis) walked up a dead branch for an extended preening session. “The waterhen likes to spread wings and shake them from side to side to dry out. “This offered an opportunity to image the crown. Did not appreciate the central crown deep purple band previously. “A short video can be viewed above. “Also recorded it feeding on a mollusc. Classical use of the foot to assit in anchorign prey and getting... Read More

Greater Banded Hornet nest

20 Aug 2014   in Fauna, Videography No Comments »
Contributed by Lena Chow
Greater Banded Hornet nest “Unlike the more common Lesser Banded Hornet which builds a beautifully patterned nest LINK, the Greater Banded Hornet builds nests underground or in concealed cavities. “I came across this nest in a wall cavity, with hornets continuously emerging from and returning to the nest. While taking the video, I noticed one of them positioned at the nest entrance, rapidly fanning its wings to cool the nest, while another one stood protectively on guard – as shown in the... Read More

Bats roosting in my porch: 7. Arrival of the Common Fruit Bats

19 Aug 2014   in Fauna, Roosting, Videography 4 Comments »
Contributed by YC Wee
Bats roosting in my porch: 7. Arrival of the Common Fruit Bats A few years ago a family of Common Fruit Bats (Cynopterus brachyotis) consisting of an alpha male and his harem of females roosted in my porch LINK. But then the mess they left on the floor below left me with no choice but to discourage their presence. The colony has now gone and in its place are groups that arrive at two different times, to rest for a few hours after a heavy meal. I have managed to partially discourage them, especially the early morning group LINK but not... Read More

White-winged Terns in Malim Nawar Wetlands, Perak

18 Aug 2014   in Morphology-Develop. No Comments »
Contributed by Dato’ Dr Amar-Singh HSS
White-winged Terns in Malim Nawar Wetlands, Perak “These migrant White-winged Terns (Chlidonias leucopterus) have been returning north in the past few weeks. I took these 2 weeks ago and have been a bit puzzled over them. “The two images were taken 45-50 minutes apart of presumably 2 different birds in breeding plumage both carrying nesting material (above). I am fairly certain it is not fish or other prey as that is consumed rather quickly and these birds were quite high up. I have previously seen ‘sham’ nesting... Read More

© Insights To Blue-winged Pittas Part3

17 Aug 2014   in Feeding strategy No Comments »
Contributed by Daisy O’Neill
© Insights To Blue-winged Pittas Part3 “While Blue-winged Pittas (Pitta moluccensis) of IDFR spent most times foraging on ground, there were times they took to tree perch when felt intruded or when calling/looking for their mates (below left). From its perch and whenever safe opportunities arose, feather maintenance and bill swiping were carried out frequently especially after substantial feeds. “The following images speak a thousand words (above right,... Read More

Bats roosting in my porch: 6. Morphology of the Common Fruit Bat

16 Aug 2014   in Fauna, Morphology-Develop. 2 Comments »
Contributed by YC Wee
Bats roosting in my porch: 6. Morphology of the Common Fruit Bat The Common Fruit Bat (Cynopterus brachyotis) is a mammal and has the capacity of true flight – unlike flying squirrels and flying lemurs that actually are gliders. Its face is dog-like (above) Like other bat species, it hangs on one or both feet when at rest with the help of its sharp, recurved claws at the tip of the five toes (below). With the head hanging down, it can suddenly launch into flight by releasing its grip on the hanging surface. The thumb, with a sharp... Read More

Encounter with Rusty-breasted Cuckoo and Hodgson’s Hawk Cuckoo

15 Aug 2014   in Raptors, Species No Comments »
Contributed by Dato’ Dr Amar-Singh HSS & Connie Khoo
Encounter with Rusty-breasted Cuckoo and Hodgson’s Hawk Cuckoo On 2nd February 2014, Dato’ Dr Amar-Singh HSS was out birding with bird watching colleague and friend Connie Khoo around the limestone hills at the fringe of Ipoh in Perak, Malaysia. Connie alerted Amar to the presence of a Rusty-breasted Cuckoo (Cacomantis sepulcralis sepulcralis) that was sitting silently in a tangled part of a tree. Once spotted, the cuckoo was not at all afraid of the birdwatchers and allowed a decent approach (above). “The important... Read More

Pink-necked Green-pigeon uses abandoned munia’s nest

14 Aug 2014   in Nesting No Comments »
Contributed by Mark Lim & Lee Chiu San
Pink-necked Green-pigeon uses abandoned munia’s nest On 5th August 2014, we received through the courtesy of Lee Chiu San, two images taken by Mark Lim of Khoo Teck Phuat Hospital in Yishun Central, Singapore. Mark spotted a male Pink-necked Green-pigeon (Treron vernans) sitting quietly on its nest outside the hospital’s food court on 1st August 2014. A few days later, Mark spotted two chicks sitting beside the adult. As with pigeons and doves, the male usually incubates the eggs and broods the chicks during the daylight... Read More