On 18th April 2010 Joyce Tan saw a Hooded Pitta (Pitta sordida) in her backyard at Singapore’s Serangoon Gardens, not once but twice in the same day.
“My maid Orpa was sweeping the leaves and fallen starfruits this morning – at about 8 am. She was startled by something brightly colored that swooped past her. It must have almost touched her. She saw that it was a colorful bird that landed on the ground. The bird hopped and flew to a corner of the backyard, and hopped and flew back to where she was. …it ‘ran’ into a frosted glass ‘tunnel’ and out the other end – a discarded wall lamp. Then it hopped and scampered to another part of the backyard where there are shrubs, before flying off. Altogether it must have stayed around for 1-2 minutes. She recognised the bird at once when I showed her the photos that I took this afternoon.”
Quipped KC Tsang, “I am just wondering if global warming had anything to do with this, as the bird should have gone home by now.”
The Hooded Pitta is an uncommon winter visitor and passage migrant to Singapore. It arrives from November, peaking in December, with a few around until early May.
Image by Joyce Tan.