Pied Fantail feeding a pair of chicks in the nest

posted in: Feeding chicks, Nesting, Videography | 0

Johnny Wee‘s image above shows an adult Pied Fantail (Rhipidura javanica) feeding one of two chicks with an insect. The chicks are tightly tugged in the nest and are about to fledge. This was around the end of July 2013.

The nesting was in the small patch of mangrove at Singapore’s Pasir Ris Park. Note that the nest is a tightly weaved structure of fibres and grasses re-enforced on on the outside with spider silk. The nest ends with a distinct but short tail.

The video clip above was taken by Jeremiah Loei showing both adults feeding the two chicks a few days earlier. Note the characteristic fanning of the tail feathers by the adults, thus the common name, fantail.

The chicks make their typical begging calls as the adults arrive with food. The chicks are restless, showing signs of impending fledging as they repeatedly flap their wings.

Nest sanitation is taken care by the adults. After feeding, the chicks will turn around and show their posterior where a white faecal sac will appear. The ever observant adults will immediately pick up the sac and dispose of it some distance away. Faecal discharge under the nest will attract potential predators.

The chicks flap their wings vigorously just before taking off on their maiden flight.

Jeremiah Loei-video & Johnny Wee-image
Singapore
August 2013

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