Call of the Fire-tufted Barbet

“I must say that the call of the Fire-tufted Barbet (Psilopogon pyrolophus) is rather unusual, it sounds like a cicada buzzing away. This bird is quite common up in Malaysia’s Frasers’ Hill and some have considered this to be one of the star birds that can be found in Frasers’ Hill.”

KC Tsang
17th August 2010

Note: According to Robson (2008), “the male territorial call is an unusually cicada-like buzzing, starting with spaced notes, then speeding up and rising in pitch towards the end.” From the above video, it is noted that the barbet has its bill closed all the time when making its call. The only visible sign that it is calling is the slight puffing around the throat area, especially towards the end on the track.

Robson, C., 2008. A field guide to the birds of South-east Asia. New Holland, London. 544 pp.

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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.

2 Responses

  1. f-barbet

    A great video documenting the cicada-like cries of the barbet. Birders should do more to record bird cries/songs instead of just reporting sightings. Such activities will make birdwatching more exciting and fun.

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