• 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,...

CARPENTER BEE SUNBATHING

12 Sep 2014   in Fauna No Comments »
Contributed by Dr Leong Tzi Ming
CARPENTER BEE SUNBATHING “On the morning of 20th July 2014, I had the opportunity to observe a male carpenter bee (Xylocopa latipes) perched at the apex of a bare branch and basking in the sun against a clear blue sky (above). At regular intervals, this bee would launch itself into the air then return to the same perch after a brief turnaround flight. “A video clip of the bee taking off and landing may be previewed here: “While perched at such a prominent and commanding location,... Read More

Oriental Pied Hornbill nesting

11 Sep 2014   in Hornbills, Nesting No Comments »
Contributed by Dato’ Dr Amar-Singh HSS
Oriental Pied Hornbill nesting “I saw an adult Oriental Pied Hornbill (Anthracoceros albirostris) sitting patiently in a tree (above) and suspected nesting. I went round to the other side of the trunk and found a recently walled up nest – note the mud still on the tip of the female’s beak (below). “The nest was located in a huge old tree, 9-10 meters up (below). While in the location, some villages came up to me and we had a chat regarding the nesting pair. They say this is the... Read More

Plantain Squirrel eating various fruits

10 Sep 2014   in uncategorised No Comments »
Contributed by YC Wee
Plantain Squirrel eating various fruits The Plaintain Squirrel (Callosciurus notatus) has been reported eating fruits, leafy shoots, bark and the stems of plants, as well as insects. The image above, with a video clip below, shows it eating a ripe Noni (Morinda citrifolia) fruit. This squirrel has also been documented eating fruits of the seram palm (Rhopaloblaste ceramica) (below)… …and the syconia of Ficus spp.) (below). An earlier post reports it eating flower nectar and a cicada LINK. It is also... Read More

Carnaby’s Black Cockatoo feeding on Bottle Brush seeds

09 Sep 2014   in Feeding strategy, Feeding-plants, Parrots, Videography No Comments »
Contributed by Teo Lee Wei & K
The Carnaby’s Black Cockatoo (Calyptorhynus latirostris) is endemic to Western Australia and highly endangered. A recent report found that it may disappear from the Perth region within 15 years LINK. “The cockatoo is a seed-eater, feeding mainly on the kernels of proteaceous plants like Grevellea, Dryandra and Banksia. The cockatoo bites and tears open the thick woody capsule and cones that enclose the seed. “The video above shows the cockatoo handling the fruiting... Read More

Raffles’s Malkoha nesting and calls

08 Sep 2014   in Nesting, Vocalisation No Comments »
Contributed by Dato’ Dr Amar-Singh HSS
Raffles's Malkoha nesting and calls “I went fairly deep into this forest reserve to get some rest and spotted a female Raffles’s Malkoha (Phaenicophaeus chlorophaeus) bringing prey to juveniles (above). Prey was a large winged insect. “The nest is located 11-12 meters, high up in the crown of large tree (below). The nest may appear very high to us but I was on an old logging trail on the slope of a hill. Hence from the bird’s perspective the crown is easily reached from the vegetation on the top... Read More

Bats in my porch: 13. Territory and Courtship

07 Sep 2014   in Fauna, Videography No Comments »
Contributed by YC Wee
Bats in my porch: 13. Territory and Courtship At 17:30h on the 17th August 2014, a lone male Common Fruit Bat (Cynopterus brachyotis) arrived in my porch to stake his territory (above). Hanging quietly from a wooden strip, he soon began to actively groom himself – licking and stretching his wings (below). Soon he crawled about the roof. By 19:00h a lone female flew in and landed by his side. With her arrival, he immediately directed his attention at her – unfolding his wings and flapping them to expose her to... Read More

Challenges for photographers stalking Little Terns

06 Sep 2014   in Photography No Comments »
Contributed by YC Wee & Dr Jonathan Cheah Weng Kong
Challenges for photographers stalking Little Terns In August 2014 a man was caught on camera tying the leg of a Little Tren (Sterna albifrons) chick to a bush so as to get a better photograph of the bird LINK. Did he really need to do that just to get a shot of the chick? Is his photographic skill so bad that he had to resort to such a method? A novice photographer can easily succeed just be waiting patiently for the right moment. Handling wildlife is unethical in wildlife photography. And when news of his bad behaviour... Read More

Grey-breasted Spiderhunter feeding on Macaranga gigantea fruits

05 Sep 2014   in Feeding-plants No Comments »
Contributed by Dato’ Dr Amar-Singh HSS
Grey-breasted Spiderhunter feeding on Macaranga gigantea fruits “I had previously reported fruit feeding (frugivory) by spiderhunters, focused on the Common Mahang (Macaranga bancana) and other fruit. See: Frugivory by spiderhunter Arachnothera species in Peninsular Malaysia. BirdingASIA 20 (2013): 76–81. LINK. “Today I saw the Grey-breasted Spiderhunter (Arachnothera modesta modesta), and many other species of sunbirds, feeding on the fruit of the Giant Mahang (Macaranga gigantea) at two sites. The Giant Mahang grows up... Read More

Bats in my porch: 12. Grooming

04 Sep 2014   in Fauna, Feathers-maintenance, Videography No Comments »
Contributed by YC Wee
Bats in my porch: 12. Grooming Common Fruit Bat (Cynopterus brachyotis), like all other bats, indulge in self-grooming most of the time when they are roosting. The bats arrive at the roosting site covered with plant sap, pollen and sometimes drops of water from the rain (above left). Grooming also removes ectoparasites. The images on the above-right shows a meticulously groomed bat after about half an hour of vigorous grooming. Bats also indulge in allogrooming or mutual (also known as directional)... Read More

Insights To Blue-winged Pittas Part 5

03 Sep 2014   in Nesting 2 Comments »
Contributed by Daisy O’Neill
Insights To Blue-winged Pittas Part 5 Nesting: “Previous observations and images suggest excavation of nesting site commenced on 21st May 2014. It was carried out mainly by the female at Itam Dalam Forest Reserve (IDFR). “Ticky and Tippy, the pair of Blue-winged Pittas (Pitta moluccensis) continued foraging and discreetly they were seen collecting nesting materials at intervals (below left). “My presence was well tolerated by Ticky- the male. He responded frequently to my whistle calls and at times flew... Read More