Asian Paradise-flycatcher bathing

on 2nd October 2009

Tan Gim Cheong photographed a white morph Asian Paradise-flycatcher (Terpsiphone paradisi) at Singapore’s Japanese Garden on 30th September 2009. There was also an Asian Brown Flycatcher (Muscicapa dauurica) and a Common Kingfisher (Alcedo atthis) in the garden. All three birds are winter visitors and passage migrants.

While others simply saw these migrants, Gim Cheong noticed that the Asian Paradise-flycatcher was diving into the water to get wet and then flying back to the perch to preen.

According to Coates et el. (2006), members of the Family Monarchidae (Monarch-Flycatchers) love to bathe during dry weather. They visit pools of water several times a day to bather as well as to drink. They plunge-dive several times into the water, each time to return to the perch to preen. In Smythies (1999) there is a specific mention of the Asian Paradise-flycatcher bathing half submerged in a forest stream, to return to its perch to preen.

Image by Tan Gim Cheong.

Coates, B. J., G. C. L. Dutson & C. E. Filardi, 2006. Family Monarchidae (Monarch-FlycatchersI). In: del Hoyo, J., A. Elliott & D. A. Christie (eds.). Handbook of the birds of the world. Vol. 11. Old World Flycatchers to Old World Warblers. Lynx Editions, Barcelona. Pp.244-329.
2. Smythies, B. E., 1999. Birds of Borneo. Natural History Publications & The Sabah Society, Kota Kinabalu. (4th ed., revised). 853 pp.

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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