Green Bee-eater casting pellet

on 19th April 2010

Dr. Sudhanshu Kothe of Nagpur, India documented the casting of a pellet by a Green Bee-eater (Merops orientalis). He was at Jaikwadi Lake in Maharashtra on 9th January 2010 when he captured the sequential images of the casting. The bee-eater gaped widely (above left) before a dark pellet appeared above its tongue (above right). The bird then lowered its head somewhat and the oval pellet dropped to the ground (below).

The pellet was located on the ground below where the bee-eater was perching.

We have earlier posted pellet casting by a Blue-tailed Bee-eater (Merops philippinus) and a Blue-throated Bee-eater (Merops viridis). With this Green Bee-eater, we now have photographic documentation of three species of bee-eaters.

For information on pellet casting by other species of birds, download the paper summarising our knowledge on local birds HERE.

Copyright images by Dr. Sudhanshu Kothe.

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

3 Responses

  1. Would the pellet mostly contain insect parts (legs, wings?)? I wonder what a bee-eater eats that is indigestible.

  2. The pellets of bee-eaters contain mainly exoskelletons of the insects they take. Wings are usually broken off before swallowing.

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