• 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,...

Asian Koel Swallows and Regurgitates Ceram Palm Fruit

in Feeding-plants  on Jan 20, 15 1 Comment »
Asian Koel Swallows and Regurgitates Ceram Palm Fruit “About a year ago I posted my observations of a male Asian Koel (Eudynamys scolopacea) swallowing the ripe fruit of Ceram Palm (Rhopaloblaste ceramica) LINK. “Recently the same palms in my condo were fruiting again. This time round a female Asian Koel was a regular visitor in the morning. It usually announced its arrival with the signature shrieking kwik-kwik-kwik call, similar to the one as recorded @14″ of the video titled “Female Asian Koel Sings”... Read More

Purple-backed Starling feasting on salam fruits

“When the Salam tree (Syzygium polyanthum) bears fruits, mixed flocks of frugivorous birds like Spotted Dove (Streptopelia chinensis), mynahs, bulbuls and Asian Glossy Starling (Aplonis panayensis) gorge themselves and create a din for a whole week. “In October 2014, a small flock of about 40 migrant Purple-backed Starling, also known as Daurian Starling (Sturnus sturninus), appeared and joined in the feast. “We managed to obtain a few clips of hungry birds... Read More

North Island Kokako feeding on leaves

North Island Kokako feeding on leaves The North Island Kokato (Callaeas wilsoni) is of ancient lineage with very few surviving close relatives (above). Its closest cousin is the saddleback (Philesturnus spp.). “The video clip below was taken on Tiritiri Matangi Island, New Zealand. The island has been kept free of pests like rats, stoats and possums so that endemic bird species, which are mostly poor flyers, have a chance to re-establish their numbers. “The tagged bird was seen on a branch at almost eye... Read More

New Zealand Pigeon (kereru)

New Zealand Pigeon (kereru) “The New Zealand Pigeon (Hemiphaga novaeseelandiae) is a rather large bird, ~ 50 cm long, often sighted sitting quietly on tree branches. Its distinctive white underparts enable the birdwatchers on the ground to spot it easily (above, image by Johnny Wee). “This endemic bird is frugivorous and feeds on leaves and flower petals as well. “This bird was seen feeding on yellow flower petals at Zeelandia, Wellington. The wonderful, clear commentaries were made by the... Read More

Grey-breasted Spiderhunter feeds on coconut flower nectar and calls

Grey-breasted Spiderhunter feeds on coconut flower nectar and calls “I have often seen the Grey-breasted Spiderhunter (Arachnothera modesta modesta) feed on the nectar of coconut flowers LINK. This was an extended observation (above). “It seemed to pick certain flowers, possibly the ones that were open and with nectar. All sort of postures were used to gain access (above). “I once saw it appear to use the foot to gain access to a flower (above) but cannot be fully certain. “The classical calls can be heard HERE with a sonogram... Read More

Grey-breasted Spiderhunter and Musa ’1000 Fingers’

in Feeding-plants  on Dec 08, 14 No Comments »
Grey-breasted Spiderhunter and Musa '1000 Fingers' “When I posted an earlier image of the Grey-breasted Spiderhunter (Arachnothera modesta modesta) nectar feeding on the banana flowers of Musa ’1000 Fingers’, I suspect few appreciated my description of this Malaysian banana. The above image shows the spiderhunter with its bill covered with pollen. “I had another opportunity and this time made sure I zoomed out as much as possible to show this magnificent fruiting plant. The image on the left does not show... Read More

Grey-breasted Spiderhunter feeding on Musa ornata nectar

in Feeding-plants  on Dec 01, 14 4 Comments »
Grey-breasted Spiderhunter feeding on Musa ornata nectar “Been wanting to document this feeding that I have seen a number of times… feeding by the Grey-breasted Spiderhunter (Arachnothera modesta modesta) on the nectar of Wild Banana (Musa ornata) (above). “The bird will probe every flower rapidly, often not putting the beak fully in but, I suspect, using the long tongue to get to the nectar (above). Dato’ Dr Amar-Singh HSS Ipoh, Perak, Malaysia 15th November 2014 Location: Kledang-Sayong Forest Reserve, Ipoh, Perak,... Read More

Red-whiskered Bulbul taking nectar from the Golden Penda flowers

in Feeding-plants  on Nov 30, 14 No Comments »
Red-whiskered Bulbul taking nectar from the Golden Penda flowers The Golden Penda (Xanthostemon chrysanthus), an exotic tree introduced from Australia, is commonly planted along roads in Singapore. It flowers profusely during certain months of the year, covering the crown with thick bunches of yellow blossoms that last a few days (above). So far we have reported Brown-throated Sunbird (Anthreptes malacensis) as seen in this LINK and Blue-crowned Hanging Parrot (Loriculus galgulus), Rainbow Lorikeet (Trichoglossus haematodus),... Read More

Little Spiderhunter feeding nectar from Allamanda flowers

in Feeding-plants  on Nov 28, 14 No Comments »
Little Spiderhunter feeding nectar from Allamanda flowers “Often bird watching is a mixture of knowledge of the bird’s habitat and behaviour, chance and environmental conditions. Went back to the fringe of the forest reserve where I had seen spiderhunters enter gardens homes to feed on nectar. This is about 500m from primary jungle. It had rained the day before and last night, so the birds were hungry. “A number of Spiderhunters were present for an hour feeding on almost every flowering plant and offered great... Read More

Grey-breasted Spiderhunter – nectar feeding

in Feeding-plants  on Nov 25, 14 No Comments »
Grey-breasted Spiderhunter – nectar feeding “A dismal day with much drizzle and dark clouds but this Grey-breasted Spiderhunter (Arachnothera modesta modesta) made up for it. Met it at the fringe of the forest reserve where it had entered the gardens of some homes to feed on nectar. “The above image was surprise – feeding on Clerodendrum thomsoniae (Bleeding-Heart Vine) nectar. “The spiderhunter also fed on the nectar of Musa ’1000 Fingers’ (a very, very long banana fruiting stem that has 1,000s... Read More