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Tiger Shrike and the caged white-eye

on 3rd October 2006

Tiger Shrikes (Lanius tigrinus) are small, harmless-looking songbirds that are far from harmless. In fact they are aggressive predators, behaving like small raptors when hunting. No doubt about it, they are carnivorous and their diet includes large insects, small rodents, reptiles and mammals. They also eat small songbirds. Their upper mandible ends in a strong, hooked bill that they use with great efficiency to kill and dismember prey.

Chan Yoke Meng was recently witness to a juvenile Tiger Shrike trying to get at four white-eyes confined safely inside a cage. As the shrike landed on one side of the cage, the captive white-eyes panicked and fluttered to the other side. The shrike then flew to the other side, sending the white-eyes panicking to the opposite side.

Even after shrike gave up and perched nearby on a nylon rope, the white-eyes were still in a state of frenzy. I suppose the white-eyes could consider themselves lucky to be inside a cage that day.

Melinda Chan sent a link that shows a Long-Tailed Shrike (Lanius schach) killing a Eurasian Tree Sparrow (Passer montanus) and successfully airlifting the carcass to its nest after several tries. This was photographed at Candaba Swamp, Pampanga, Philippines on July 17, 2004.

Input and images by Meng and Melinda Chan.

If you like this post please tap on the Like button at the left bottom of page. Any views and opinions expressed in this article are solely those of the authors/contributors, and are not endorsed by the Lee Kong Chian Natural History Museum (LKCNHM, NUS) or its affiliated institutions. Readers are encouraged to use their discretion before making any decisions or judgements based on the information presented.

YC Wee

Dr Wee played a significant role as a green advocate in Singapore through his extensive involvement in various organizations and committees: as Secretary and Chairman for the Malayan Nature Society (Singapore Branch), and with the Nature Society (Singapore) as founding President (1978-1995). He has also served in the Nature Reserve Board (1987-1989), Nature Reserves Committee (1990-1996), National Council on the Environment/Singapore Environment Council (1992-1996), Work-Group on Nature Conservation (1992) and Inter-Varsity Council on the Environment (1995-1997). He is Patron of the Singapore Gardening Society and was appointed Honorary Museum Associate of the Lee Kong Chian Natural History Museum (LKCNHM) in 2012. In 2005, Dr Wee started the Bird Ecology Study Group. With more than 6,000 entries, the website has become a valuable resource consulted by students, birdwatchers and researchers locally and internationally. The views and opinions expressed in this article are his own, and do not represent those of LKCNHM, the National University of Singapore or its affiliated institutions.

Other posts by YC Wee

4 Responses

  1. Hi there My name is Keith, I live in the USA. I found your website to be very interesting I will check back in later.

  2. Pingback: candaba swamp
  3. Very interesting video and dieerffnt as the doctor didnt do any packing but did cauterizing the wound. I loved the soundtrack to this video, its a hell of a lot better than elevator music or that acidrock/heavy metal serial killer music! Good job on the post!

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