Dato’ Dr Amar-Singh HSS took off from work in early September 2009 to birdwatch deep in the secondary forest of Tambun in Ipoh, Malaysia. He had to travel 9 km along a logging trail in a 4-wheel vehicle with the remaining 3 km by foot.
His reward? A flock of Pin-tailed Parrotfinch (Erythrura prasina prasina) feeding on the seeds of a large clump of giant bamboo (Gigantochloa scortechinii) growing by a river (left).
There were at least 12, possibly 15 parrotfinches, a mixture of adult males and females with at least two juveniles. The bamboo clump was then in its fruiting peak (usually around August to September) and the birds were in a feeding frenzy, the seeds being their favourite food. Most of the birds were about 7-8 metres up the bamboos. The images below show the male (left) and the female (right) feeding.
“Lots of acrobatics as they fed, often upside down, to reach an inflorescence (as previously noted by GC Madoc). They made soft chittering calls,” recalls Amar. “The presence of juveniles is important as little information is available about breeding. This record supports some breeding in July-August. I noted at least two juveniles and they were occasionally fed, but were also able to feed by themselves.”
All images by Amar-Singh HSS (Dato, Dr)