Tiger Shrike casting a pellet

posted in: Pellets | 2

Johnny Wee’s images of a Tiger Shrike (Lanius tigrinus) casting a pellet capture the process from start to finish. As the shrike widens its gape as if to vomit, its tongue is exposed (above).

Immediately after, the first sign of the pellet can be seen emerging from between the mandibles (above, below).

This is followed by the large black pellet emerging from its mouth to fall to the ground below (below).

If the pellet can be located, the indigestible parts of the shrike’s food can be dissected and identified, especially if they are bones.

Bones from a pellet casted by a Black-shouldered Kite (Elanus caeruleus) are shown HERE. Those probably from a Common Barn Owl (Tyto alba) are shown HERE.

A PDF on pellet casting by local birds can be accessed HERE.

Johnny Wee
Singapore
October 2015

This post is a cooperative effort between Birds, Insects N Creatures Of Asia and BESG to bring the study of birds and their behavior through photography and videography to a wider audience.

2 Responses

  1. Action well captured.
    Interesting that this shrike has such a black eye band but with its grey cap still not fully developed. Adult Tiger Shrikes are rarely seen in the past, but this year a few sub-adults / adults can be seen at Bidadari.
    Bidadari is still the best place to see migratory birds. Hopefully, the Authorities will consider keeping the place as it is – in its wild where these visiting birds stopped by every year.

  2. We’re a group of volunteers and starting a new scheme in our community. Your website provided us with useful information to work on. You have done an impressive activity and our entire group might be grateful to you.

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