A Pied Triller comes a-calling

on 2nd April 2009

“On the afternoon of March 25th, my son, Saker, saw a bird hit the living room window. The windows of our 9th floor flat were shut but I could make out a bird through the frosted glass… a Pied Triller (Lalage nigra).

“I went out of our front door, into the corridor, followed by Saker and my wife, Sham. There, at the window sill, sat an immature triller. It had not hit hard and looked quite unhurt. It made the occasional single-note call, which I am sure was to attract a parent’s attention.

“On closer inspection, we could see the pale gape and streaky chest, which is indicative of a young bird. However, the black and white wings showed that it was moulting into a male of the species.

“It could not fly far and I picked it up for a closer inspection. There were a few kerengga ants (Oecophylla smaragdina) biting it and I removed four. It looked well enough, so I decided that it was best to return it to the trees below my block and hope that the parents will relocate it through its calls.

“I fed it with a little weak sugar water and Saker and I took it downstairs. There, we placed it on a branch of a small tree and it made a few short flights from branch to branch, calling. We left it there and hoped for the best.

“The Pied Triller is a fairly common resident of our parks and gardens. It hunts insects in the treetops.”

Subaraj Rajathurai
26th March 2009

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.

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