Sleeping Banded Pitta

on 31st October 2007


Dr Chua Ee Kiam has generously agreed to share his image of a sleeping Banded Pitta (Pitta guajana) that he encountered in Danum Valley in Sabah, Malaysia recently (left).

Dr Chua recounts: “A Banded Pitta was peacefully asleep with its head beneath its wing. It was perched on a small branch at chest level perhaps to avoid snakes and other animals whose presence may cause the branch to move or vibrate. I have not seen such brilliant colours and never at such close-up. And it was so tempting to capture such an exquisite bird. The bird was left to continue its slumber.“

We first posted “What does a tailorbird do at night” in August 2007 showcasing a Common Tailorbird (Orthotomus sutorius) sleeping in Taman Negara, Malaysia. Since then we have received images of Olive-backed Sunbird (Cinnyris jugularis) and Common Tailorbird as well as a Chestnut-naped Forktail (Enicurus ruficapillus).

Much as we do not encourage people to disturb sleeping birds, we do need to document them for scientific purposes. Photographers are urged to restrain from disturbing the sleeping birds excessively when photographing them.

Dr Chua Ee Kiam
September 2007

Note: Thanks to Ashley Ng and Daisy O’Neill, see responses below, we have the proper identification of the pitta and made the relevant corrections. The bird was wrongly stated as Blue-winged Pitta (Pitta moluccensis). The title of this piece has similarly been changed.

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 Ee Kiam,

    This doesn’t look like blue-winged at sleep,
    my guess it could probable be a male Bar-bellied
    or least Banded.
    Wish to visit Borneo one fine day though.


  2. Hi Ee Kiam,
    I have to agree with Ash . This is a Banded Pitta Male. Amongst all pittas, I was told and do agree, this species is most brilliant bird that shows it’s best at flight.
    You got a beauty there.

    Daisy O’Neill

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