• 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-crowned Forktail’s calls

in Vocalisation  on Jul 29, 14 No Comments »
White-crowned Forktail’s calls “
Have been seeing White-crowned Forktail (Enicurus leschenaultia frontalis
) intermittently but limited images. Locally it is vulnerable and is uncommon. “Saw two today – an adult and a juvenile. Image posted is of the juvenile.
 “The alarm calls are given HERE. The last part of the recording gives the ususal and contact calls.
 “A sonogram and waveform is provided above.” Dato’ Dr Amar-Singh HSS Ipoh, Perak, Malaysia 15th July Location: Ulu... Read More

The Clouded Monitor and the Banded Bullfrog

The Clouded Monitor and the Banded Bullfrog Johnny Wee encountered a Clouded Monitor (Varanus nebulosus) in Singapore’s Venus Drive in May 2014 (above). Clamped tight in its mouth was a Banded Bullfrog (Kaloula pulchra). The bullfrog was countering the monitor’s attempt at swallowing it by inflating its body. For 15 minutes the monitor tried its utmost to swallow its prey but failed. It eventually gave up and the bullfrog went free. Banded Bullfrogs are not native to Singapore. Commonly sold in pet shops, they... Read More

Little Spiderhunter – nectar feeding and calls

Little Spiderhunter – nectar feeding and calls “The Little Spiderhunter (Arachnothera longirostra cinireicollis) is still possible to find in selected green lung pockets in the city. Its diet is insect prey (spiders) and nectar. The nectar is taken from flowers of the wild gingers, wild bananas and the Coral tree (Erythrina sp.). The range of flowers fed on is much larger than currently known or documented. They included Passiflora (Passion fruit), Heliconia, Ixora, Powder puff, etc. “Spotted an adult feeding on... Read More

Oriental Pratincole nesting

in Nesting, Vocalisation  on Jul 01, 14 1 Comment »
Oriental Pratincole nesting Dato’ Dr Amar-Singh HSS visited the Malim Nawar Wetlands in South-West Perak, Malaysia on 28th February 2014. This is an extensive ex-tin mining area with many ponds/lakes that have converted to fish farming. There was a flock of at least 35 Oriental Pratincole (Glareola maldivarum) using a freshly cleared land to breed. The image at the top shows an adult incubating the eggs. The nest is a scrape surrounded by a collection of loose vegetable matter with two eggs in it... Read More

Little Grebe – whinny trill calls, courtship?

Little Grebe – whinny trill calls, courtship? “Little Grebes (Tachybaptus ruficollis) have colonised the peninsular since the 1950s and locally retain their ‘breeding’ plumage right through the year (above). There are large numbers at Malim Nawar Wetlands. “I had an opportunity to watch what appeared to be courtship behaviour. Three adults, in good plumage, were ‘horsing around’; most appropriate term I can think of. They were frolicking in the water, with one occasionally ‘taking off’ in flight just... Read More

Migrating Black-browed Reed-warbler in Perak, Malaysia

Migrating Black-browed Reed-warbler in Perak, Malaysia “This post is a culmination of 6 visits to the same site over the past 2.5 months. I have been trying to get to know reed-warblers better and have identified a location where three different migrant species have wintered – the Pallas’s Grasshopper-warbler (Locustella certhiola), Black-browed Reed-warbler (Acrocephalus bistrigiceps) (above, below) and the Oriental Reed-warbler (Acrocephalus orientalis). “The location is a vast one with many, large ex-mining... Read More

Call of the female Oriental Pied Hornbill

“In a previous post, Amar provided photos and descriptions of a female Oriental Pied Hornbill (Anthracoceros albirostris) calling LINK. “Last weekend, I happened to be near a female Oriental Pied Hornbill which was calling, and here is a short clip:” Lena Chow Singapore 14th April... Read More

Calls of the Crimson-breasted Flowerpecker

in Vocalisation  on Apr 30, 14 No Comments »
Calls of the Crimson-breasted Flowerpecker  “There is limited informational locally on the calls of the Crimson-breasted Flowerpecker (Prionochilus percussus ignicapilla). Above shows the bird making the calls while enjoying a juice berry. “Wells (2007) states ‘A monosyllabic weg (Madoc). Song undescribed.’ Robson (2002) describes it as ‘repeated sharp high pitched teez tit-ti and buzzy whit-whit or vit-vit’. “I have often heard the ‘buzz’ call that this bird makes. Often this call is a single note... Read More

Yes, the Short-tailed Babblers were courting

Ong Ei Leen downloaded her video clip on YouTube in March 2014 showing what she claimed to be a pair of Short-tailed Babblers (Malacocincla malaccensis) in a courtship dance. There were some doubts on whether it was courtship or aggression as there were no clear views due to the vegetation around. Wildlife Consultant Subaraj Rajathurai has this to say: “…I cannot say for certain as I have not had the pleasure of seeing this behaviour personally but considering that most... Read More

LARGE-TAILED NIGHTJAR CALLING

LARGE-TAILED NIGHTJAR CALLING “On the evening of 9th March 2014, I was exploring a wooded area in Singapore to observe the awakening of Large-tailed Nightjars (Caprimulgus macrurus) amongst the treetops. The arrival of darkness is typically greeted with their signature ‘chionk’ notes uttered at regular intervals. One handsome and proud male was calling boldly from atop a branch, despite occasional gusts of strong winds threatening to tip its balance (above). “A video clip of the... Read More