• 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,...


PINK-NECKED GREEN-PIGEONS FEEDING ON FIGS “On the 9th November 2014, I was drawn towards the majestic crown of a mature fig tree (Ficus benjamina), which was punctuated with abundant red fruits. These enticing red dots had also captured the attention of Pink-necked Green-pigeons (Treron vernans). “The demographics of this flock of pigeons included: females (above), which blended with the foliage remarkably; “males (above, below), which paraded their pretty pink necks proudly; “as well as juveniles... Read More

Pink-necked Green-pigeon feeding 3 fledglings

Pink-necked Green-pigeon feeding 3 fledglings Rosemary Tan’s video clip of an adult Pink-necked Green-pigeon (Treron vernans) feeding three fledglings was documented in Tiong Bahru (below). There is something unusual here. Normal the full clutch for such green-pigeon is two but in this case there were three eggs laid, thus three fledglings. As there is only one adult here caring for them, the fledglings are fighting to be fed, to the extent of climbing all over the adult. (The above image shows a colourful male on... Read More

Asian Glossy Starling eating Ceram Palm fruits

It was about 1800 hours in the evening and the Asian Glossy Starlings (Aplonis panayensis) were gathering in preparation for their night roost elsewhere LINK. As usual the two Ceram Palms (Rhopaloblaste ceramica) in my garden were the main gathering points. In this instance one of the palms with a bunch of ripe fruits attracted a number of juvenile Asian Glossy Starlings. Birds like Asian Koel (Eudynamys scolopacea) LINK, Pied Imperial-pigeons (Ducula bicolour) LINK and... Read More


COMMON FLANGETAIL OVIPOSITING “Although the Common Flangetail (Ictinogomphus decoratus, family Gomphidae) is a fairly widespread dragonfly species in Singapore, observations of their mating activity or egg-laying behaviour seem scarce. I have only ever witnessed their brief mating twice in the field, but their union has always been too fast and furious for me to document. “Soon after mating, the female would seek a suitable site to deposit her eggs. On the 19th November 2014, I was thrilled with the... Read More

Bats roosting in my porch: 24. A bag of red chillies

in Bats, Fauna, Videography  on Jun 12, 15 5 Comments »
Bats roosting in my porch: 24. A bag of red chillies So far, all attempts at discouraging Common Fruit Bats (Cynopterus brachyotis) from roosting in my porch failed. I tried spotlights and hung CDs LINK 1 and LINK 2 but without success. One outcome of the search was the opportunity to study various behavioural traits of these bats from grooming LINK to feeding LINK to courtship LINK and mating LINK. One bonus was when I came across the alpha male one early morning licking the varnished wooden strips, using the site as a sort... Read More

Brahminy Kite feeding on fish

Brahminy Kite feeding on fish “An adult Brahminy Kite (Haliastur indus) feeding on a fish from the nearby fish farms. “The bird was intermittently disturbed by another Brahminy Kite (not in image or video), so looked up periodically. “One of my friends says the fish is a Tinfoil Barb (Barbonymus schwanenfeldii). Dato’ Dr Amar-Singh HSS Ipoh, Perak, Malaysia 5th April 2015 Location: Tambun Interior, Ipoh, Perak, Malaysia Habitat: Secondary growth near limestone hills, vegetable and fish... Read More

Little Cormorant – nesting material

in Nesting, Videography  on Jun 07, 15 No Comments »
Little Cormorant - nesting material “The Little Cormorant (Phalacrocorax niger) has been a rare migrant locally until my sighting in August 2013 of 10-12 migratory birds in one extended wetlands location. Prior to this there have been occasional individual birds seen infrequently (above). “Since August 2013 this flock, possibly up to 15 birds, has been sighted repeatedly along a 10-12 km extensive stretch of wetlands (ex-tin mining area with extensive pond/lakes, fish and duck farming). I have presumed... Read More

Dawn Chorus in an urban garden

in Videography, Vocalisation  on Jun 05, 15 4 Comments »
Dawn Chorus in an urban garden During the night diurnal birds roost in trees, remaining silent throughout. Just before dawn they wake up and start vocalising. This mass singing of birds is referred to as the dawn chorus. It has been noted that the quantity and often also the quality of singing during this period is significantly different from the singing during the day. With some species the songs are also different during the day. And not all species join in the chorus at the same time. In my urban... Read More


COMMON FLANGETAIL FEMALE FEEDING “The Common Flangetail (Ictinogomphus decoratus, family Gomphidae) is the most readily observed member of the Clubtail family in Singapore and are regularly sighted along reservoirs, ponds and streams. However, it is usually the males that are encountered as they bask boldly in the sun and guard their turf (above, below). “The female is rarely seen, but I was provided with brief views of one fine example on 19th November 2014 (below). She is very similar to the... Read More

Red-whiskered Bulbul: 4. Did a hornbill raid the nest?

An earlier post described the nesting tree of the Red-whiskered Bulbul (Pycnonotus jocosus) being normal until a strange series of loud calls were heard LINK. Subsequently the bulbuls deserted the nest. On examining the nest the following morning it was found empty with no trace of feathers, etc. The account was also posted in the Birds, Insects N Creatures Of Asia’s Facebook LINK. This attracted the attention of Jaz Xang who suggested that it could be a hornbill’s... Read More