The Yellow-vented Bulbul (Pycnonotus goiavier) is one of the more successful urban birds in Singapore. Part of this success is its ability to adapt to its food source. It is omnivorous, that is, it will eat insects as well as a range of fruits.
At the same time it also scavenge on scraps of discarded food. Newly hatched nestlings are fed with insects and other invertebrates. The growing nestlings require a constant supply of protein. This keeps the parents busy bringing such food constantly.
Almost every garden in Singapore will have at least a pair of Yellow-vented Bulbuls. On certain months of the year the loud and somewhat pleasant bubbling songs in the early morning and later evening are music to the ear.
These birds are so used to humans that they will build their nests among ornamental plants grown in gardens or in potted plants placed in balconies or even along the verandahs of high-rise apartment buildings. The nests are deep cups made from grass, dry leaves, etc. Looking untidy from the outside, it is neatly lined inside.
Lena Chow recently sent an image of a pair nesting among her artificial plants (below). Talk about getting used to urban living…
Images of bulbul by Tang Hung Bun; nesting among artificial plant by Lena Chow; input by YC.