Orange-bellied Flowerpecker eating Piper aduncum fruits

on 29th March 2010

Dato’ Dr Amar-Singh HSS encountered a pair of Orange-bellied Flowerpeckers (Dicaeum trigonostigma trigonostigma) at 600-700 ASL in Pos Slim Road, Perak, Malaysia on 22nd December 2009. The birds were feeding on the fruits of the exotic pepper plant, Piper aduncum, commonly known as Spanish elder. This shrubby tree is widespread in Central and South America as well as the West Indies. Introduced to the Bogor Botanical Gardens in 1860, it has since spread throughout Southeast Asia, being naturalised in many areas. In Malaysia it is commonly encountered in secondary fallow vegetation.

The Orange-bellied Flowerpeckers were feeding with great relish on the fruits. According to Dr David Wells, the fruits are a hot favourite with this flowerpecker as well as other smallish frugivores.

Mervin Quah documented the Long-tailed Sibia (Heterophasia picaoides wrayi) eating the fruits at Malaysia’s Genting Highlands in Pahang.

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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