• 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,...

GIANT HONEY BEES DRINKING FROM STREAM

07 Mar 2014   in Fauna 3 Comments »
Contributed by Dr. Leong Tzi Ming & Gary Lim
GIANT HONEY BEES DRINKING FROM STREAM “At around midday on 22nd February 2014, we had arrived at a stream in the Ulu Langat forest (Selangor, Peninsular Malaysia). Despite a severe lack of rain over the preceding weeks, a steady flow of freshwater was indeed a welcome sight (above). “Our attentions were drawn towards a small swarm of Giant Honey Bees (Apis dorsata) which was descending upon a particular spot along the stream where a thin film of water was washing over a smooth, rounded boulder... Read More

Grey-rumped Treeswift taking turns to incubate egg

06 Mar 2014   in Nesting No Comments »
Contributed by Jeremiah Loei
Check out the spectacular images of the Grey-rumped Treeswift (Hemiprocne longipennis) nesting in an earlier post HERE. In this post, Jeremiah Looi’s series of video clips focuses on the different shift changes when one adult leaves the nest to give way to another to take over the incubation of the egg. The above clip shows the female incubating the single egg. She is recognised by her blackish ear-coverts as compared to the male’s prominent rufous ear-coverts. She... Read More

Chestnut-headed Bee-eater – nest building and cooperative breeding?

05 Mar 2014   in Nesting No Comments »
Contributed by Dato’ Dr Amar-Singh HSS
Chestnut-headed Bee-eater – nest building and cooperative breeding? “The Chestnut-headed Bee-eaters (Merops leschenaulti) are the favourite bee-eaters for my wife and myself (above). They are friendly, visit our home twice a day (non breeding season) and have a delightful personality. “Was out today and came across two different nesting sites 0.5 km apart (above). One had 4 nesting holes, the other 6. All were either freshly constructed or in the process of construction. “Recent prior observations of nesting holes in my region... Read More

Javan Mynas with yellow collars…

04 Mar 2014   in Feeding-plants No Comments »
Contributed by Ah Pin & Subaraj Rajathurai
Javan Mynas with yellow collars… The above image of a group of eight Javan Mynas (Acridotheres javanicus) with four having a yellow collar each, was posted on Facebook in early March 2014 by photographer Ah Pin at Neo Tiew Lane 2 LINK. People were wondering what caused the yellow collar. According to wildlife consultant Subaraj Rajathurai LINK, they all appear to be Javan Mynas Four of the perched birds appear to have pollen dusted on their throats. These are juvenile birds, as they have a brown wash to... Read More

Video clip of the White-throated Kingfisher’s call

03 Mar 2014   in Kingfishers, Videography, Vocalisation 2 Comments »
Contributed by Lena Chow
Lena Chow sent in the video above to add visuals to an earlier account of the less common call of the White-throated Kingfisher (Halcyon smyrnensis) by Dato’ Dr Amar-Singh HSS LINK. The kingfisher in the clip was perching on a television aerial on Lena’s neighbour’s rooftop, whinnying incessantly for at least 5 minutes.... Read More

Territorial fight of Libellago lineata, the Golden Gem damselfly

02 Mar 2014   in Fauna, Intraspecific, Videography No Comments »
Contributed by Tang Hung Bun
Some male dragonflies and damselflies are very attached to their territories, so much so that they respond aggressively to intruding males of the same species. This is shown in Tang Hung Bun’s video clips of the damselfly, the Golden Gem (Libellago lineata). Two males are in a territorial flight, to be subsequently joined by a third. Such fights usually occur during the late morning and can last for over an hour. These are beautiful damselflies. Unfortunately they are... Read More

Blue-winged Leafbird foraging in a bird wave

01 Mar 2014   in Feeding strategy, Feeding-invertebrates 1 Comment »
Contributed by Dato’ Dr Amar-Singh HSS
Blue-winged Leafbird foraging in a bird wave “One of the joys of jungle bird watching is have a bird ‘wave’ (mixed foraging party) ‘wash’ over you. All you need to do is stop and just watch (naked eye) as they feed all around. Some Blue-winged Leafbirds (Chloropsis cochinchinensis moluccensis) were very kind to allow close up images of foraging. “Their classical style for animal prey is to check out every curled or folded leaf (above, below). “The image below is of an adult... Read More

Nesting of the Grey-rumped Treeswift

28 Feb 2014   in Nesting 2 Comments »
Contributed by Johnny Wee
Nesting of the Grey-rumped Treeswift Grey-rumped Treeswift (Hemiprocne longipennis) is a common resident in Singapore. At rest, it is easily recognised by the long wing tips crossing over the shorter forked tail (above). The male has rufous ear-coverts (above) while the female’s ear-coverts are blackish (below). The nest is a half-saucer of hardened saliva that incorporates pieces of moss, bark flakes and body feathers, possibly from the treeswifts themselves. It is attached to the side of the slender tree... Read More

Lesser Sand-plover foraging

27 Feb 2014   in Feeding strategy, Feeding-invertebrates, Migration-Migrants, Videography No Comments »
Contributed by Jeremiah Loei & Wang Luan Keng
Lesser Sand-plover (Charadrius mongolus), previously known as Mongolian Plover, is a common winter visitor and passage migrant to Singapore. It arrives in early July and leaves towards the end of June. Jeremiah Loei’s video clip of three Lesser Sand-plovers was documented at Pasir Ris on 11th August 2012. The plovers, one non-breeding and two breeding adults, were foraging in the intertidal zone. Moving along the sandy beach, they pecked on the surface sand to pick up... Read More

Chestnut-headed Bee-eater – conflict (social behaviour)

26 Feb 2014   in Bee-eaters, Feeding-invertebrates, Intraspecific No Comments »
Contributed by Dato’ Dr Amar-Singh HSS
Chestnut-headed Bee-eater – conflict (social behaviour) “I was drawn to a pair of Chestnut-headed Bee-eater (Merops leschenaulti) who were calling loudly and seem agitated (above). They then progressed to have an altercation (conflict) with each other. I observed 3 consecutive episodes. What was odd was that each time they would amicably return to the same perch. They appeared to be family or mates but the conflict in mid air (below) was hard to explain. “There were a few other Chestnut-headed Bee-eaters around but... Read More