• 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,...

Fledgling playing statue

05 Feb 2009   in Brood parasitism No Comments »
Contributed by Lim Poh Bee
Fledgling playing statue “I was in Vietnam in June 2008 at a mountain resort known as Mai Chau. It was disappointing for me that the birds there were dismally meagre. But I encountered something rather strange while walking round the parameters of the rice fields. There was a pair of what I believe to be Ashy Woodswallows (Artamus fuscus) flying about – see the picture with the grasshopper(?) in its beak. The first time round nothing out of the ordinary happened. But when I passed them a... Read More

Peregrine Falcon in Singapore’s heartland

04 Feb 2009   in Raptors 3 Comments »
Contributed by Kwek Swee Meng & R Subaraj
Peregrine Falcon in Singapore’s heartland Kwek Swee Meng sent an image of a Peregrine Falcon (Falco peregrinus) perching at a window ledge of a Housing Development Board’s apartment in Singapore. This falcon has an almost worldwide distribution, breeding in west Siberia to Kamchatka and migrating south to the Malay Peninsula, down to Singapore and Sumatra. Our bird specialist, R Subaraj noted that “this is an adult Peregrine Falcon of the migratory race japonensis, which is the most regularly seen subspecies in... Read More

Red-winged Starling spotted in Jurong

03 Feb 2009   in Species 1 Comment »
Contributed by Choo Teik Ju
Red-winged Starling spotted in Jurong A Red-winged Starling (Onychognathus morio) was spotted at Jurong Lake Park by Choo Teik Ju a.k.a choo in early December 2008. Teik Ju initially thought it was a crow but then the bill was not as thick as the crow’s. It was actually a Red-winged Starling, native to eastern Africa, from Ethiopia to the Cape in South Africa. In its native countries the starling is common in urban areas, using buildings and other man-made structures as nesting sites. The bird is highly... Read More

Indian Cuckoo in comfort behaviour

03 Feb 2009   in Comfort behaviour, Feathers-maintenance No Comments »
Contributed by Lee Tiah Khee
Indian Cuckoo in comfort behaviour Lee Tiah Khee captured an image of an Indian Cuckoo (Cuculus micropterus) in its comfort behaviour. As in most birds, the cuckoo stretched it’s pair of wings to give itself an “angel” pose and at the same time fanned its tail feathers. Check out the comfort behaviour of other birds: kingfisher, hornbill, bee-eater and Lineated Barbet. Image by Lee Tiah Khee. This post is a cooperative effort between NaturePixels.org and BESG to bring the study of bird behaviour... Read More

Juvenile Black-shouldered Kites

02 Feb 2009   in Raptors No Comments »
Contributed by Dr Jonathan Cheah Weng Kwong
Juvenile Black-shouldered Kites In July 2008, Dr Jonathan Cheah Weng Kwong posted an account of his favourite raptor, as follows: “Black-shouldered Kite (Elanus caeruleus) have been one raptor of affinity for me. Almost two to three nestlings were found every year, some offered spectacular flights, some high resolution macros. They were also the first raptor that got me hooked with the hovering heli-flights as they spot their prey and then dive to the ground. I have witnessed mommy BSK teaching two kids... Read More

Javan Mynas and wild boars

01 Feb 2009   in Feeding strategy 1 Comment »
Contributed by Adrian Lim
Javan Mynas and wild boars Adrian Lim a.k.a. wmw998 was in Muar, Johor, Malaysian late November 2008 when he encountered a pair of wild boars (Sus scrofa). There was a pair of Javan Mynas (Acridotheres javanicus) foraging together with the pigs. The mynas were even seen perching on the back of the animals, waiting for insects to be displaced by the foraging pigs. In Singapore we used to see mynas moving with cows, during the days when cows were allowed to wander along the roads of Singapore, to graze... Read More

Of papayas and Red-throated Barbets

01 Feb 2009   in Barbet-To'can-H'guide, Feeding-plants 1 Comment »
Contributed by Daisy O'Neill
Of papayas and Red-throated Barbets At 23cm, the Red-throated Barbet (Megalaima mystacophamos) can be considered medium in size as compared to the smallest 17cm barbet in the SEA Megalaimidae family. The male species wears one of the most colourful head gear and is not so commonly seen these days (left). The female is a bit unusual (below left). My previous sightings of this species had been few and far in between. At times, calls of uneven intervals sounded like, ‘chok-chok-chok…’ were only heard. So... Read More

Blue-tailed Bee-eater and the dragonfly

31 Jan 2009   in Bee-eaters, Feeding-invertebrates 2 Comments »
Contributed by Lee Tiah Khee & R Subaraj
Blue-tailed Bee-eater and the dragonfly Lee Tiah Khee photographed a Blue-tailed Bee-eater (Merops philippinus) in the act of swallowing a dragonfly earlier this year. “It took less than two seconds to swallow it.” According to our bird specialist R Subaraj, who is also into dragonflies: “Based on the colouration, the shape of the abdomen, the reddish tinge in the wing and the brown patch at the base of the hindwing, I would lean toward the dragonfly being a male Tramea transmarina. “In Singapore, this is... Read More

Blue-tailed Bee-eater landing on a perch

30 Jan 2009   in Bee-eaters 1 Comment »
Contributed by Ng Kiah Hwa
Blue-tailed Bee-eater landing on a perch Ng Kiah Hwa a.k.a. hawkeyes is sharing with us sequential shots of the Blue-tailed Bee-eater (Merops philippinus) landing on a perch taken in Penang, Malaysia on 14th December 2008. The image above shows the bird approaching the landing spot. The above images, from top left and clockwise: Slowing down and preparing to land; touch down; retracting its landing gears; and a successful landing. This post is a cooperative effort between NaturePixels.org and BESG to bring the... Read More

Resident Black-winged Kite defending its territory

29 Jan 2009   in Interspecific, Migration-Migrants, Raptors 4 Comments »
Contributed by Subaraj Rajathurai
Resident Black-winged Kite defending its territory “On January 11th, 2009, while observing birds on Pulau Semakau, I noticed a harrier in the distance. It was hunting low over the grassland. Soon, I was able to obtain a much closer view and the plumage was distinctive; a male *Western Marsh Harrier (Circus aeruginosus) (left top). This is quite a rare migrant to Singapore. This autumn, there had been at least one other bird at Changi between October – December. “Suddenly, a Black-winged Kite (Elanus caeruleus) came... Read More