• 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,...

Encounter with a Collared Scops Owl

02 May 2008   in Owls No Comments »
Contributed by Johnny Wee
Encounter with a Collared Scops Owl During his regular morning walks in the Central Catchment Forest in February 2008, Johnny Wee had a number of surprise encounters with the Collared Scops Owl (Otus bakkamoena). Each time the encounter was in a different location, perching on a branch of a tree and staring at him. He did not have his usual photographic gear with him the first time and could not record his sighting. Other times when he was prepared, the owl flew off as soon as he approached. He was lucky on... Read More

Tiger Shrike eating cicada

01 May 2008   in Feeding-invertebrates No Comments »
Contributed by Adrian Lim
Tiger Shrike eating cicada An adult male Tiger Shrike (Lanius tigrinus) in breeding plumage was photographed in Malaysia by Adrian Lim a.k.a. wmw998 and posted in the NaturePixels.org forum. It was the morning of April 2008 when the Tiger Shrike caught a large cicada, specifically the Large Bird Cicada (Dundubia somraja) (above). This cicada is green with transparent wings. The bird is a passage migrant and winter visitor in both Malaysia and Singapore. It hunts from a perch and takes large insects... Read More

1994 sighting of the Great Hornbill remembered

01 May 2008   in Hornbills No Comments »
Contributed by Ben & YC
1994 sighting of the Great Hornbill remembered Ben drew my attention to the 2004 special issue of the journal, Bird Conservation International. This special issue, dedicated to the conservation of hornbills, carries some of the many papers read at the Third International Hornbill Workshop held in Phuket, Thailand in 2001. Ben e-mailed me, “I just came across a bit of interesting trivia from an introduction page of a special supplement of Bird Conservation International dedicated to the conservation of hornbills…... Read More

Dollarbird feeding nestlings with shield-bug

30 Apr 2008   in Feeding-invertebrates 2 Comments »
Contributed by James Wong
Dollarbird feeding nestlings with shield-bug The Dollarbirds (Eurystomus orientalis) were nesting again at the Changi Boardwalk. Constructed from palm stems, probably nibong (Oncosperma sp.), the rotting top portions are favourite nesting holes for these birds. These hole nesters make use of the natural cavities as they are not able to excavate their own. There is an earlier post on the nesting in 2006. James Wong a.k.a. Jw73 documented the birds bringing insects to the nestlings and are sharing his images with us... Read More

Sighting of Pin-tailed Whydah

29 Apr 2008   in Exotics 2 Comments »
Contributed by Alvin & Dr Eric Tan
Sighting of Pin-tailed Whydah Alvin a.k.a. epiphytophile of NaturePixels.org was at Changi Cove on the afternoon of 9th April 2008 when he saw a strange and unfamiliar looking bird with a prominently long tail (above). He managed to get a few pictures before the bird disappeared. It was a male Pin-tailed Whydah (Vidua macroura) in breeding plumage, thus the long tail. Similarly, Dr Eric Tan a.k.a. MountainMan succeeded in snapping a few images of this impressively looking and attractive bird... Read More

Blue-throated Bee-eater handling a bee

29 Apr 2008   in Feeding-invertebrates No Comments »
Contributed by Dr. Redzlan Abdul Rahman
Blue-throated Bee-eater handling a bee As the name implies, the main diet of the Blue-throated Bee-eater (Merops viridis) is honeybees (Apis spp.) and other hymenopterans. It also eats other insects like flies, beetles, bugs, moths, butterflies, dragonflies and even small fishes. The bird forages from a high perch, to return to the perch to beat the prey before swallowing. With smaller, soft insects, they are swallowed at once, in other words, eaten on the wing. Bee-eaters also feast at termite hatches and pick... Read More

Whistling Thrushes in Malaysia

28 Apr 2008   in Species 1 Comment »
Contributed by KC Tsang & Allan Teo
Whistling Thrushes in Malaysia Peninsular Malaysia has two resident Whistling Thrushes, Blue (Myophonus caeruleus) (above) and Malayan (M. robinsoni). The former has a wide distribution that includes South-central Asia, Southern Tibet, the Himalayas, part of the Indian subcontinent and China, down south to Southeast Asia, up to Sumatra and Java. The Malayan, on the other hand, has a very limited range: confined only to the Main Range from Cameron Highlands south to Genting Highlands (below). The two... Read More

A family of Red-legged Crakes

27 Apr 2008   in Species 4 Comments »
Contributed by Dr Eric Tan
A family of Red-legged Crakes On 11th February 2008, Dr Eric Tan a.k.a. MountainMan, documented an adult Red-legged Crake (Rallina fasciata) accompanied by a recently fledged chick foraging together in the Singapore Botanical Gardens (above: adult right, fledgling left). There is more than one family of Red-legged Crake in the Gardens. One or more birds are regularly sighted in the morning or early evening, foraging or even stealing a bath in a roadside puddle after rain. The above images show the... Read More

White-bellied Sea Eagle learning to fish

27 Apr 2008   in Feeding strategy, Feeding-vertebrates, Raptors 3 Comments »
Contributed by Wei Chun
White-bellied Sea Eagle learning to fish A White-bellied Sea Eagle (Haliaeetus leucogaster) was documented by Wei Chun a.k.a. speedblade, catching a fish around Bukit Panjang (above). Apparently, the eagle was not very experienced in catching fish. Or was it a bad day for the bird? This eagle is an opportunistic feeder, catching a wide range of mainly aquatic vertebrates, including reptiles, fish, birds and mammals. It also takes carrion, floating refuse and wastes in rubbish dumps. It usually hunts from a high... Read More

Avian Kama & Sutrajee

26 Apr 2008   in Barbet-To'can-H'guide, Courtship-Mating No Comments »
Contributed by Daisy O'Neill
Avian Kama & Sutrajee “When article ‘An Uncouth Avian Cowboy Comes to Town’ was posted last February (see HERE), I least expected my good fortune to again witnessed another act of copulation by a pair of uncouth Coppersmith Barbets (Megalaima haemacephala), Kama and Sutrajee, who seemed to love kamasutric performances in an open-air auditorium. “The stage scene was by no means in a romantic perfumed garden or near any golden lotus ponds, but a far cry up on an old skeletal tree branch,... Read More