• 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,...

White-rumped Munia – a closer look and calls

White-rumped Munia – a closer look and calls “Closer views of the White-rumped Munia (Lonchura striata subsquamicollis) (above). “The lower bluish-white lower mandible in contrast to the upper horn black mandible (above, below). Also the red-brown iris. “The white back that shows up as a white rump (below). “The under surface of the tail and vent (below). “An audio recording of the calls described as “pirrit” or “prrrit” (see Wells 2007). Calls are quite soft and the recording has... Read More

Less common views of the Long-tailed Shrike

in Morphology-Develop.  on Dec 14, 14 No Comments »
Less common views of the Long-tailed Shrike On the morning of 27th November 2014 Dato’ Dr Amar-Singh HSS came across a Long-tailed Shrike (Lanius schach bentet) in a grassy area near a housing estate in Ipoh, Perak, Malaysia (above, below). The previous night was raining and this shrike ended up thoroughly wet. As it took advantage of the morning sun to dry its plumage and preen, it exposed views of the bird that were not commonly seen by birders. The images above and below show evidence that its tail feathers... Read More

A close look at the Spectacled Spiderhunter

in Morphology-Develop.  on Dec 10, 14 No Comments »
A close look at the Spectacled Spiderhunter “An inexplicable encounter, where this Spectacled Spiderhunter (Arachnothera flavigaster) allowed very close observations. “The above is a close up the face and shows the black eyelid-rims, dark brown iris and reddish base of lower mandible (Wells 2007). Note the broad and uniform eye ring, said to be “primrose-yellow” (Wells 2007). Note the continuation of the mouth margin with a raised, but separate section of the eye ring. Close-up and in bright light the yellow... Read More

Rusty-rumped Warbler – call

Rusty-rumped Warbler - call “Went out looking for migratory Reed Warblers this morning; heard 3 but only saw one. I was surprised that it was the Locustella Warbler (Locustella certhiola) the hardest for me to spot. It is said to be more active in the evening but, in the past and at this visit, it can be spotted in the undergrowth in the mornings preening or foraging (above). “The above nicely shows the horn black or ivory upper mandible. “There a number of calls but the one I managed to record... Read More

Little Spiderhunter – nectar feeding and sexing

Little Spiderhunter  – nectar feeding and sexing “Had an opportunity to watch an adult Little Spiderhunter (Arachnothera longirostra cinereicollis) at close range for an extended period with lots of images. “This spiderhunter feeds on the flower nectar of Papaya (Carica papaya) (top) and Banana (Musa sp.) (above). “Posting this image (above, below) as it show the underside of wing and pectoral region. There are varying opinions about sexing in this species summarised below” 1. Wells (2007) The birds of the... Read More

White-headed Munia’s social behaviour

in Morphology-Develop.  on Sep 29, 14 No Comments »
White-headed Munia's social behaviour “Not sure why this adult White-headed Munia (Lonchura maja) was agitated and raised its hackles with alarm calls. It could been my presence but I suspect I missed some element of danger to the juveniles.” Dato’ Dr Amar-Singh HSS Ipoh, Perak, Malaysia 31st August 2014 Location: Tambun Interior, Perak, Malaysia Habitat: Orchards, fish farming, ex-mining pools, limestone... Read More

Asian Glossy Starling: 1. Claiming roof space

Asian Glossy Starling: 1. Claiming roof space The soft boards sealing the strip of roof projecting from my neighbour’s house fell off some months ago at two points. I expected either Javan Myna (Acridotheres javanicus) or Asian Glossy Starling (Aplonis panayensis) would claim these roof areas for nesting. But for weeks there was no sign of any of these birds entering the spaces. Then, in the afternoon of 11th June 2014 I happened to notice an adult Asian Glossy Starling flying right through that first gap. It... Read More

Asian Glossy Starling – hackle feathers

in Morphology-Develop.  on Sep 17, 14 1 Comment »
Asian Glossy Starling – hackle feathers “I find that the more I watch the more to discover. Was enjoying two Asian Glossy Starlings (Aplonis panayensis) when noticed these pointed feathers at the neck, the hackles. “Wells (2007) says of them ‘feathering of head, to anterior edge of mantle and upper breast, hackle-pointed ..’ “Craig (2010, Starlings and Mynas) says ‘hackle feathers of the neck and throat…’” Dato’ Dr Amar-Singh HSS Ipoh, Perak, Malaysia 11th May 2014 Location: Canning Garden... Read More

Black-and-yellow Broadbill: male, female and juveniles

Black-and-yellow Broadbill: male, female and juveniles “I was driving on this road through this primary forest today when I heard the characteristic mews of this broadbill Black-and-yellow Broadbill (Eurylaimus ochromalus ochromalus) – above is a male, below is a female. “I pulled the car over to try and identify the bird’s location and spotted two adults with prey, possibly for juveniles. All were animal prey. Prey under-described in my region (Wells 2007). “I could not spot the nest but after some search... Read More

White-winged Terns in Malim Nawar Wetlands, Perak

in Morphology-Develop.  on Aug 18, 14 No Comments »
White-winged Terns in Malim Nawar Wetlands, Perak “These migrant White-winged Terns (Chlidonias leucopterus) have been returning north in the past few weeks. I took these 2 weeks ago and have been a bit puzzled over them. “The two images were taken 45-50 minutes apart of presumably 2 different birds in breeding plumage both carrying nesting material (above). I am fairly certain it is not fish or other prey as that is consumed rather quickly and these birds were quite high up. I have previously seen ‘sham’ nesting... Read More