On 31st May 2912, Dawn Kua spotted an Oriental Pied Hornbill at Singapore’s Braddell Road (above). “I’m very new to birdwatching in Singapore… and so I wasn’t sure if sightings were of interest to the BESGroup. From what I’ve read up, the Oriental Pied Hornbills (Anthracoceros albirostris) are still relatively rare on the island so I thought this might be of some interest,” wrote Dawn.
The Oriental Pied Hornbills were once a rare sight in Singapore. Not any more. These large and magnificent birds are becoming more and more common in our highrise housing estates, in various urban areas and even in Orchard Road. The public is always thrilled to encounter such a rare bird and invariably will make contact with the Bird Ecology Study Group to report their sightings.
Singapore’s Garden City Campaign saw the planting of thousands of wayside trees followed by fruit trees in gardens, parks and even the wayside. These provide food for the hornbills, like the various palms, guava (Psidium guajava) and rambutan (Nephelium lappaceum), among others.
The Hornbill Project LINK, now in its seventh year, also plays an important role in encouraging the return of hornbills to the main island.