• 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,...

Pellets from Tuas: 3. It’s a mouse!

in Owls, Pellets, Raptors  on Feb 27, 15 No Comments »
Pellets from Tuas: 3. It's a mouse! Of the pellets collected from an avenue at Tuas earlier by Melinda Chan LINK, one was prominently larger than the others (70x40mm) (above). It was also darker and more compact. Preparation of the pellet for harvesting of bone fragments followed the earlier protocol LINK. The number of bone fragments collected totaled 86. These included a skull, lower jaws, dislocated skull bones, ear capsules, shoulder blade, long bones, ribs, vertebrae, foot bones, toes, claws, etc.... Read More

Pellets from Tuas: 2. Bone fragments in the pellets

Pellets from Tuas: 2. Bone fragments in the pellets On18th January 2015 four pellets of varying sizes (400-450 x 20-30 mm) and shapes (roundish to oval) were collected by Melinda Chan from Tuas (above) LINK. They were not fresh, probably a number of days old. Each was covered with hairs. They were relatively soft in texture and easily dismantled. One clearly showed the presence of bleached bone fragments on the surface. The pellets were soaked in water for a few hours. A disinfectant (dettol) was added as a precaution... Read More

Pellets from Tuas: 1. The pellets

in Pellets, Raptors  on Feb 20, 15 2 Comments »
Pellets from Tuas: 1. The pellets The casting of pellet by certain groups of birds is not too well known– see HERE for more information. After swallowing their prey, these birds regurgitate the indigestible parts that were compacted in the gizzard in a form of pellets. These pellets collect on the ground below the trees where the birds normally perch. Ornithologists collect and study pellets to get information of what the birds had been eating. Of late, Melinda Chan had been collecting these pellets... Read More

Juvenile Rufous-bellied Eagle mobbed

in Interspecific, Raptors  on Oct 05, 14 No Comments »
Juvenile Rufous-bellied Eagle mobbed “I have occasional seen mynas group together and the flock chases off a raptor. Seen this happen with a White-bellied Sea-eagle (Haliaeetus leucogaster), a Brahminy Kite (Haliastur indus) in my neighbourhood and other raptors. Today saw 20-25 Jungle Mynas (Acridotheres fuscus) (below) mobbed a juvenile Rufous-bellied Eagle (Hieraaetus kienerii) for quite some distance (above and bottom). “I am uncertain if this is the local Hieraaetus kienerii formosus or a... Read More

Encounter with Rusty-breasted Cuckoo and Hodgson’s Hawk Cuckoo

in Raptors, Species  on Aug 15, 14 No Comments »
Encounter with Rusty-breasted Cuckoo and Hodgson’s Hawk Cuckoo On 2nd February 2014, Dato’ Dr Amar-Singh HSS was out birding with bird watching colleague and friend Connie Khoo around the limestone hills at the fringe of Ipoh in Perak, Malaysia. Connie alerted Amar to the presence of a Rusty-breasted Cuckoo (Cacomantis sepulcralis sepulcralis) that was sitting silently in a tangled part of a tree. Once spotted, the cuckoo was not at all afraid of the birdwatchers and allowed a decent approach (above). “The important... Read More

BAT HAWK PREENING AND STRETCHING

BAT HAWK PREENING AND STRETCHING “The Bat Hawk (Macheiramphus alcinus) is known to roost in ‘lofty forest trees’ from the lowlands to the foothills (Lekagul & Round, 1991: 96). In late April 2014, I had the pleasure to view a family of Bat Hawks (two parents and one fledgling) perched upon a grand, emergent tree in a forested area in Sarawak, Borneo (above). “At the fork of a main branch, the disused nest was still visible and largely intact (above). “One morning, I had my eyes on one of... Read More

Black Vulture feeding on Rainbow Trout in Costa Rica

Black Vulture feeding on Rainbow Trout in Costa Rica “This Black Vulture (Coragyps atratus) feeding on an dead Rainbow Trout was found at the lower level of the Valley of San Derado de Dota at the Savegre Lodge area in Costa Rica. This place has a number of fresh water ponds fed by fresh running water, that was breeding or farming Rainbow Trouts for the market or the lodges in the area. “The pond usually has one or two dead fish floating on the surface and when they drift close to the banks the vultures would... Read More

Black Baza casting pellet?

in Pellets, Raptors  on Feb 06, 14 No Comments »
Black Baza casting pellet? “One early morning in January 2014, more than a dozen Black Bazas (Aviceda leuphotes) were discovered resting just inside a patch of wooded forest. Some flew off after detecting that they were being watched. The few that remained were unperturbed and calmly perched, basking in the early morning sunlight. “At a distance of more than 20 metres away, my attention was focused on the nearest bird (above left). As I started shooting, this individual was noticed stretching... Read More

Black-shouldered Kite caught a Garden Supple Skink

Black-shouldered Kite caught a Garden Supple Skink Johnny Wee’s images of a Black-shouldered Kite (Elanus caeruleus) were photographed at Singapore’s Lorong Halus Wetland on 20th November 2013. Subaraj Rajathurai examined the images of the kite with its prey and concluded that the latter is probably a Garden Supple Skink (Lygosoma bowringii). This kite usually hunts from a perch. It keeps a close watch on any prey appearing below. Once the prey is sighted, the raptor lunges down, snatch the prey with its powerful... Read More

Mating Black-winged Kites

Mating Black-winged Kites “Formerly known as the Black-shouldered Kite, the Black-winged Kite (Elanus caeruleus vociferus) is now considered to be a distinct species. I have not seen the Black-winged Kite for quite some time before this encounter. Happy to share images of this pair mating. It happened very unexpectedly. I was fortunate to be at the right place at the right time. “Passing by this area, I always scrutinise this barren tree, which have yielded some avian friends on many... Read More