• 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,...

Southern Ground Hornbill

17 Oct 2008   in Hornbills No Comments »
Contributed by Winston Loong
Southern Ground Hornbill Southern Ground Hornbill (Bucorvus leadbeateri) is found in parts of Kenya, Burundi, Angola, Namibia, Botswana and South Africa. This is the largest and heaviest of the hornbills. The plumage is all black with white primary feathers that are apparent only when the bird flies, and that is infrequently and only when necessary. The male has red facial skin and an inflatable bright red throat skin (above). The female has a blue patch on the red throat skin. This hornbill is a... Read More

Encounter with the Plain-pouched Hornbills of Perak

16 Oct 2008   in Migration-Migrants 1 Comment »
Contributed by Subaraj Rajathurai
Encounter with the Plain-pouched Hornbills of Perak “The Plain-pouched Hornbill (Aceros subruficollis) is considered a South-East Asian endemic by Robson (2000) with a distribution that includes Myanmar, Tenasserim, W & S Thailand and northern Peninsula Malaysia but Wells (1999), who calls this species the Tenasserim Hornbill, includes Assam in the species’s range. “Previously, only 9 species of hornbills were confirmed for Peninsula Malaysia. Then in 1992, Sutari Supari and Ho Hua Chew observed large numbers of... Read More

Blog Action Day 2008: Migrants

15 Oct 2008   in Migration-Migrants, Miscellaneous 1 Comment »
Contributed by YC
Blog Action Day 2008: Migrants The bulk of our migrants arrive during September through to November. Most come from the temperate north to escape the harsh winter and the resulting food shortage. Here in the south, they find greener pastures, to fatten up before returning to their breeding grounds from March to late May. The winter visitors stay for a few weeks to months while the passage migrants are here only for a few days before they continue their journey south. Besides birds, we also have other... Read More

Smooth Otter at Sungei Buloh Wetland Reserve

14 Oct 2008   in Miscellaneous 5 Comments »
Contributed by KC Tsang
Smooth Otter at Sungei Buloh Wetland Reserve KC Tsang as at the Sungei Buloh Wetland Reserve on 10th October 2008 looking for birds to photograph. What he encountered was a Smooth Otter (Lutrogale perspicillata), a member of a family that had taken residence at the park. “Was at SBWR this morning, and came across this fellow lying on his bed of green algae. Realising that someone was watching him, he opened his eyes, looked at me, and decided to walk around a bit, did a big pee on the path, funny thing was he then... Read More

Pied Fantail feeding juvenile cuckoo

13 Oct 2008   in Brood parasitism 1 Comment »
Contributed by Mark Chua
Pied Fantail feeding juvenile cuckoo In late August 2008, Mark Chua documented an adult Pied Fantail (Rhipidura javanica) feeding a very hungry juvenile cuckoo (above). Interestingly, Mark had earlier seen another pair around the same the area of the Sungei Buloh Wetland Reserve. The cuckoo was a Rusty-breasted Cuckoo (Cacomantis sepulcralis) (below left), seen from South Thailand and Peninsular Malaysia through Sumatra, Borneo, Java, Bali and the Philippines and to Lesser Sundas. The bird is an uncommon... Read More

A simple feeder for the Spotted Dove

12 Oct 2008   in Feeding strategy No Comments »
Contributed by Opel Mok
A simple feeder for the Spotted Dove Opel Mok saw through the nesting of a pair of Spotted Doves (Streptopelia chinensis) on a pot of mint plant in his porch (1, 2). Weeks after the chicks fledged, the adults returned with their fledglings to the nesting area, much to the delight of Opel and his wife. So they left food for the birds to feed on. Opel subsequently constructed a crude feeder made from an old soft drink bottle glued to a base (below left) and filled with a commercial bird feed (left; below... Read More

Oriental Honey Buzzards attack bees’ nest

11 Oct 2008   in Feathers-maintenance, Feeding-invertebrates, Raptors 2 Comments »
Contributed by Subaraj Rajathurai
Oriental Honey Buzzards attack bees' nest “During a visit to the Royal Belum State Park in Malaysia recently, a few friends and I spent a day on a boat, exploring a few sites around the Temengor Lake. The weather was nice and sunny and as a result, a few raptors were to be seen, including Osprey (Pandion haliaetus), Brahminy Kite (Haliastur indus), White-bellied Sea-Eagle (Haliaeetus leucogaster), Grey-headed Fish-Eagle (Ichthyophaga ichthyaetus) and Crested Serpent-Eagle (Spilornis cheela). “It was... Read More

Common Iora feeding bee to chick

10 Oct 2008   in Feeding-invertebrates No Comments »
Contributed by Choo Teik Ju
Common Iora feeding bee to chick The date was 10th August 2008. The place was Pulau Ubin, Singapore. The photographer was Choo Teik Ju a.k.a. choo. The subject was an adult Common Iora (Aegithina tiphia) feeding what looked like a bee to its fledgling. The adult was careful to “process” the food before passing it to the fledgling. It placed the insect into the gaping mouth of the fledgling before retrieving it to “process” it further. There was loud protest from the fledgling but once the adult... Read More

Pink-necked Green Pigeon eating seeds of yellow simpoh

09 Oct 2008   in Feeding-plants 5 Comments »
Contributed by Johnny Wee
Pink-necked Green Pigeon eating seeds of yellow simpoh The above image shows a male Pink-necked Green Pigeon (Treron vernans) eating a seed of the yellow simpoh (Dillenia suffruticosa). Not only does this pigeon eats the seeds, many others birds also seek them out. The flowers are yellow and large (below left). Once pollinated, the petals are shed and the persistent green sepals fold inwards to enclose the developing fruit. At this stage these fruiting “buds” are often mistaken for flower buds. The image of the fruit... Read More

Orange-bellied Leafbird and bottle-brush trees

08 Oct 2008   in Feeding-plants, Plants No Comments »
Contributed by Dr Eric Tan
Orange-bellied Leafbird and bottle-brush trees The Orange-bellied Leafbird (Chloropsis hardwickii), a resident of the montane forests of Peninsular Malaysia, is always present whenever the bottlebrush trees (Callistemon spp.) are in flowers. This is an attractive green bird with yellow-orange belly. The male (above) has a black mask and black throat, not th female (left). The bird visits a wide range of flowering plants, including exotics, to collect nectar. It has a long tongue that extrudes beyond the tip of the bill,... Read More