• 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,...

Little Spiderhunter – nesting behaviour

in Nesting  on May 27, 15 No Comments »
Little Spiderhunter – nesting behaviour “I had an opportunity to watch a pair of Little Spiderhunters (Arachnothera longirostra cinireicollis) look for a nesting site. “I was alerted to their presence when I saw active fluttering behaviour about 16-18 meters across a mining pool against the primary growth of the limestone. They were checking out one small bush as a potential nesting site. They were very good at fluttering in mid-air while they looked under almost every leaf. “The image here is a composite... Read More

Nest of the Common Myna

in Nesting  on May 25, 15 1 Comment »
Nest of the Common Myna “I recently (25th April 2015) found a myna nest in the cable connector box on the sixth floor of my block and managed to photograph the eggs. Very nice blue colour…” wrote Francis Lim, Singapore’s Snake Man and Mistletoe Hunter LINK. The nest was that of the Commn Myna (Acridotheres tristis) which was once common but now slowly being replaced by the more aggressive Javan Myna (Acridotheres javanicus) LINK. The nest, high up on the sixth floor of a high-rise... Read More

Bar-winged Flycatcher-shrike – nest sanitation

in Nesting, Videography  on May 15, 15 No Comments »
Bar-winged Flycatcher-shrike – nest sanitation “I have continued to monitor one pair of Bar-winged Flycatcher-shrikes (Hemipus picatus intermedius) nesting LINK. “They have one chick that they are currently feeding. Had an opportunity to see nest sanitation. The episode occurred immediately after feeding. I was not able to determine any ‘signal’ that the parent gave the chick. “The faecal sac extruded was eaten by the parent. Frank B. Gill (Ornithology, WH Freeman & Co, 3rd Revised edition, 2006) states... Read More

Olive-backed Sunbird collecting fruits of Porophyllum ruderale (F: Asteraceae)

in Nesting, Plants  on May 08, 15 No Comments »
Olive-backed Sunbird collecting fruits of Porophyllum ruderale (F: Asteraceae) On 18th April 2015 Thong Chow Ngian photographed a female Olive-backed Sunbird (Nectarinia jugularis) harvesting nesting material at Ponggol Barat grassland. The sunbird was working its way from the top to the bottom of the approximately half a metre tall shrub (above). With its bill full of dried fruits (above, below), it flew off to its secret nesting site. The sunbird returned to the same shrub several times to gather more dried fruits. It was so engrossed with the... Read More

Red-whiskered Bulbul: 2. Incubation

in Nesting, Videography  on May 05, 15 No Comments »
Red-whiskered Bulbul: 2. Incubation After completing the nest LINK, the pair of Red-whiskered Bulbul (Pycnonotus jocosus) was absent for a few days from the Belimbing (Averrhoa carambola) nesting tree. Then one day the female returned, stayed for some time and laid an egg. Unlike the period when the pair was building their nest when the air was filled with their loud songs, the early incubation period was a much quieter affair. But I did capture a more discreet series of five different songs alerting the... Read More

Rufous-browed Flycatcher – nesting

in Nesting  on Apr 30, 15 No Comments »
Rufous-browed Flycatcher - nesting “I was on this trail when I spotted a Rufous-browed Flycatcher (Ficedula solitaris malayana) carrying prey (above). So I withdrew some distance to see if I could observe nesting. I managed to identify the nest after two visits by the bird. I then imaged the nest from some distance and left. “Prey for this species is not well documented (Wells 2007). I saw it bring both a caterpillar and a flying insect in the same mouthful (top) and later a red spider (above). “The... Read More

Bar-winged Flycatcher-shrike – nesting

in Nesting  on Apr 27, 15 No Comments »
Bar-winged Flycatcher-shrike - nesting “I was privileged to see two different pairs of Bar-winged Flycatcher-shrikes (Hemipus picatus intermedius) nesting on the same day. One had just completed their nest and were incubating. The other had one chick that they were feeding. Both were located on bare, dead trees 10-12 meters up. The nest is a small compact cup that barely accommodates the incubating adult or the growing chick. “The above image shows the male and that below the female incubating the egg/s.... Read More

Pygmy Wren-babbler – nest building

in Nesting, Videography  on Apr 24, 15 No Comments »
Pygmy Wren-babbler – nest building “Disclosure: I was privileged to watch a pair of Pygmy Wren-babblers (Pnoepyga pusilla) nest building. I watched them on three separate periods over 3 hours, for a total period of observation of 40 minutes. I broke up the observation to give them a break from my presence, although they seem to adjust to my being there. I used only handheld photography or videography, with no flash and positioned myself about 7-8 meters from the nest. “I came across them on a lonely... Read More

Red-whiskered Bulbul: 1. Nest building

Red-whiskered Bulbul: 1. Nest building For more than a few months a pair of Red-whiskered Bulbul (Pycnonotus jocosus) was seen in and around my garden (above). Their loud and melodious songs cannot help but attract attention to their presence. In March 2015 I began to notice the pair loitering around my Belimbing (Averrhoa belimbi) tree, sometimes hiding among the clusters of leaves at the ends of a pair of closely growing stems. On closer examination I noticed the beginning of a crude nest lodged between the... Read More

Glossy Swiftlet – nesting conflict

in Intraspecific, Nesting  on Apr 12, 15 No Comments »
Glossy Swiftlet – nesting conflict “We noticed a small flock (10-12) of nesting Glossy Swiftlets (Collocalia esculenta cyanoptila) starting to build nests on the under surface of the balconies of an apartment building. Usually these swiftlets choose darker environments like car parks or large drainage tunnels, etc, so this was a bit unusual. “However the main observation was the conflict between the nesting birds. One pair had managed to find a good nesting site and was clinging on to that corner surface... Read More