Yellow-vented Bulbul nesting in a fan

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YVB-fan [JeanHo] 1

“On 10th May 2016 I found a pair of Yellow-vented Bulbuls (Pycnonotus goiavier) nesting inside a disused fan in my balcony (above). I wish it success as a sunbird once tried building a nest there but gave up halfway through. Maybe too hot there.

“The fan hasn’t been used for years. Guess the birds knew that it’s safe to build. They aren’t bird brained after all (see video above).

YVB-fan [JeanHo] 4+

“Towards the end of May a chick was seen perching on top of the fan, occasionally flapping its wings (above). The adults were feeding it with a greenish object (below) – a caterpillar?

YVB-fan [JeanHo] 5+

“On 2nd June I went to check on the nest and found the chick wasn’t standing up. The parents were flying around nearby to feed the chick (below) and one flew up to the nest looking into it.

YVB-fan [JeanHo] 11

“I thought the chick had perished but when I went out on to the balcony after the parents had flown away I heard cheeping from the vicinity of the nest. It took me some time to realise the sound was coming from the plastic bottle into which someone had cut an opening. I looked inside and there the chick was (below).

YVB-fan [JeanHo] 9

“I placed the bottle on a table so that the parents could see it, and when I checked again later I was relieved to see the mother bird feeding it (below).

YVB-fan [JeanHo] 10+

“Apparently the chick fell from the top of the fan into the bottle. I’m wondering how it was going to be able to get enough strength to fly out of that deep bottle. Unfortunately the chick died – so sad.”

Dr Jean Ho
Singapore
5th June 2016

Note:
Yellow-vented Bulbuls have the habit of using non-conventional nesting material like plastic bags and tissue paper. They also nest in the most unusual places like a hanging basket, artificial plant as well as a bicycle.

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