Mountain Fulvetta eating a hopper?

posted in: Feeding-invertebrates | 1

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Adrian Lim managed to few shots of the Mountain Fulvetta (Alcippe peracensis) having breakfast early one morning in May 2008. The insect it managed to capture appears to be a beetle. The bird behaves a little like a shrike in the way that it eats its prey, using its ‘claw’ to hold it.

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This shy montane forest babbler is a resident of Peninsular Malaysia. Like most babblers, they move in the lower levels of the forest and it is generally difficult to photograph them.

As with the Blue-winged Minla (Minla cyanouroptera), its food is poorly recorded except small berries and small caterpillars that were observed being fed to nestlings (Wells, 2007). Collar & Robson (2007) mention only “insects” as its food.

To a suggestion that the insect may be a beetle, Prof Cheong Loong Fah wrote: “I am not sure; I am more inclined to think that it is a hopper, because the antenna is not visible, and also the shape of the wing in the …picture (in that there is a bend in the interior margin to accommodate the scutellum?).

All images by Adrian Lim.

References:
1.
Collar, N. J. & Robson, C. (2007). Family Timaliidae (Babblers). Pp. 70-291 in: del Hoyo, J., Elliott, A. & Sargatal, J. eds. Handbook of the birds of the world. Vol. 12. Picathartes to Tits and Chikadees. Barcelona: Lynx Editions.
2. Wells, D.R. (2007). The birds of the Thai-Malay Peninsular. Vol. II, Passerines. Christopher Helm, London.

This post is a cooperative effort between www.naturepixels.org and BESG to bring the study of bird behaviour through photography to a wider audience.

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