Barred and Little Cuckoo Doves roosting together

on 30th August 2009

Connie Khoo was at Malaysia’s Cameron Highlands doing some light birding in late August 2009. There, she chanced upon a large flock of more than a hundred cuckoo doves all roosting together in the early morning. For three consecutive mornings the cuckoo-doves were at the same site roosting. There were two species, Barred Cuckoo Dove (Macropygia unchall) (above left) and Little Cuckoo Dove (M. ruficeps) (above right).

Hidden under thick vegetation were two raptors – the Rufous-bellied Eagle (Hieraaetus kienerii) and Blyth’s Hawk Eagle (Spizaetus alboniger). Both raptors have a reputation of taking birds and they were eying the doves.

As soon as a raptor flew out of hiding, the huge flock of doves dispersed in a burst of flapping wings.

According to Connie, “David Wells mentioned that he never ever saw communal roosting by cuckoo doves, let alone two species roosting together. Seems there is no end to making new discoveries.”

All images by Connie Khoo.

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

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