“The Scaly-Breasted Bulbul (Pycnonotus squamatus webberi) is arguably one of our most beautiful bulbuls. I have always observed it as part of a mixed foraging party at a fruiting ficus in primary jungle. In the past I have usually seen it alone.
“On this occasion saw a pair of adults, assumed breeding pair, who moved around together. I have seldom heard it call and on this occasion heard it twice only (it was choice of documenting feeding or waiting for a call, tough choice). It was a sharp “wit”.
“The pair foraged closely together, seldom more than 1-2 meters apart. They did not use calls to keep in touch. Even when I approached the tree at 4-5 meters distance there were no warning calls uttered.
“It is usually shy but on this occasion allowed me extended views and I saw many feeding episodes. It came to feed on the Ficus villosa fruit (above), but after a short time moved over to an adjacent fruiting tree with small berries where it spent a long time feeding (right).
“Unsure of the name of the tree – it is 3.5-4 meters tall, has small light green berries which turn purple when ripe. Many other bulbuls also like these berries including the Spectacled Bulbul (P. erythropthalmos), the Red-eyed Bulbul (P. brunneus) and the Cream-vented Bulbul (P. simplex simplex).”
Dato’ Dr Amar-Singh HSS
Kledang-Sayong Forest Reserve
Ipoh, Perak, Malaysia
15th June 2010
Red Data Status: Near threatened.