Feeding behaviour of the Blue-tailed Bee-eater

on 16th February 2010

“This pair of Blue-tailed Bee-eaters (Merops philippinus philippinus) was hawking for insects from this branch. It was interesting to note the behaviour of the Blue-tailed Bee-eater on the right. As the partner/friend flew in with a catch, it began to “wag the tail” and get all fluffed up in anticipation. It then continued the ”wagging” and seemed to “beg” for a bite/to eat the prey. Only when it was sure that it was not going to be fed did it return to usual behaviour.

“Not sure if this is a juvenile who has recently become an adult or just a mate expecting a feed.”

Dato’ Dr Amar-Singh HSS
Ex-mining pools around Gua Tempurung
Gopeng, Perak, Malaysia
29th December 2009

Maybe the bird on the right is a female expecting to be fed in courtship? And maybe the priority of male was more to eat than to mate?

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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