Striped Tit Babbler: A failed nesting

posted in: Nesting-failed | 3

Tsen Thau Ming a.k.a. t_tsen was again at the Admiralty Park in August 2008. This time he stalked a pair of nesting Striped Tit Babbler (Macronous gularis) and documented their nesting that unfortunately ended in failure.

11131.jpg

“On August 7… I spotted a Striped Tit Babbler with nesting material flying low over the ground (left). My instincts told me that it was about to start building a nest or had already started. I followed the bird with my bino and when it flew behind some trees, I lost it. Their loud calls could be heard and I made out about 4 to 5 birds in the vicinity.

“Waiting in camo pull over, I sat on a fallen tree trunk. Their calls were all around me, but the birds were high up in the trees. Suddenly, out from nowhere, one flew in front of me. This time I saw where it landed, watching it carefully I saw the bird hop from the branch and into a large, curled up, dried leaf that had fallen from the tree above and lodge itself into the branches below (below).

234.jpg36.jpg

“The bird left the nest after it had placed the nesting material into the leaf. From my observation, the materials varied from long dried leaves about 15cm long to short ones, thin pieces of twine was also used…. The nest was situated at about 1.70m from the forest floor…

“I watched over a period of 3 hrs as the pair built their nest. A loud squabble changed my point of view away from the nest to see two Striped Tit Babblers fighting. The winner flew back to the nest with some material in its beak. As I watched, I noticed something strange, there were 3 birds bringing material to the nest but only 2 seemed to be building. The other would go near the nest only to be chased off. It dawned on me that this perhaps was a lazy bird trying to ‘steal’ another birds nest material for it’s own. And this was perhaps why the earlier squabble was all about. As it was very cloudy and about to rain, I left the area.

“I returned on 8 Aug at 7:30am to find the nest still intact and the birds still building… Once in awhile, the 3rd bird would still come back to try ‘steal’ nest material and again would be chased away.

“…My observations showed that both birds were active in the building of the nest. Time between each entry and exit ranged from between 2 to 3 mins. Flat bladed leaves about 15cm were the preferred material…

“I did not return from 9-10 August. Rain over the past few days had made me anxious. I returned on 11 August. …The leaf was no longer hanging on the branch. And the calling of the babblers was no longer heard in the area. I did a search of the forest floor hoping to find that fallen leaf and nest. But could not find it.

“I returned again the next day with better weather. The morning light was good and I found the leaf and nest about 10m away from the original site. The leaf had since dried from the rain, the material inside however was still damp. I was glad that I found it. I returned the leaf to the original site in hopes that the birds would return. None came back. However, the babblers were still in the nesting vicinity that day.”

This post is a cooperative effort between www.naturepixels.org and BESG to bring the study of bird behaviour through photography to a wider audience.

3 Responses

  1. […] | user-saved public links | iLinkShare 1 votesStriped Tit Babbler: A failed nesting>> saved by Tanker940 1 days ago2 votesTwine>> saved by StoneC0ldSteveAustin 2 days ago1 votesFive […]

  2. […] 28-12-2008 Incentivizing semantic content publication Saved by narutoboi92 on Wed 24-12-2008 Striped Tit Babbler: A failed nesting Saved by viginaria on Wed 24-12-2008 Why Google Is a Media Company Saved by angelhyacinth on Fri […]

  3. […] in an inappropriate location as seen in this pair of Oriental Magpie Robin (Copsychus saularis) and Striped Tit Babbler (Macronous gularis). In the case of this pair of Olive-backed Sunbirds (Cinnyris jugularis), they […]

Leave a Reply