Sunda Pygmy Woodpecker: Time to Fledge

on 10th October 2012

“I have been observing this pair of mother and chick Sunda Pygmy Woodpeckers (Dendrocopos moluccensis) behavoir on their last two days around my apartment. Before that the mother was feeding the chick as usual, and the chick would follow the mother very closely until the last moments when the mother decided that the chick should go out on its own and fend for himself.

“You would notice the change in behaviour of the mother towards the chick in the video below. The mother would refuse to feed the chick, with the chick screaming to be fed. It was so loud that the chick’s frantic calls could be heard from inside my apartment. The mother would threaten to peck at the chick, it would also bump violently onto to the chick trying to shoo away the chick. So such is life in nature.

“Now there is also another amazing aspect of this feeding female you would notice in the video, the bird does not pause to find the prey that it is looking for, so how does her tactile sensors called Herbat corpuscles work? I know for sure that other bigger woodpeckers would probe the crevices below the bark after they have removed the top bark layer with their bills, their tongue which has a spear like head which is used to spear the grubs that they are looking for. And for doing that they do sometimes get into trouble like my article some time back where the woodpecker could not extricate itself from the crevice after spearing something? And died hanging from the branch.

“So now the pair has left the trees in front of my apartment not to be heard again, maybe next time when the female decides to make a nest again.

KC Tsang
3rd October 2012

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.

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