on 20th November 2012

“In October 2012, a pair of Blue-bearded Bee-eaters (Nyctyornis athertoni) was observed in a forested area in Thailand (above).

“They had already begun excavation works for a nest-hole, which was situated on a steep earth bank surrounding a shaded, secluded pond (above).

“During the day, each of the partners would take turns to enter the nest cavity and progressively scrape away the soft soil with their feet (below). Each partner would spend between three to five minutes on average inside the tunnel. Upon emergence, residual soil may be seen on their beaks and this would be fastidiously wiped away on the branch of their favourite perch.

“Typically, each excavation session lasts half an hour, after which the pair usually flies off to a higher perch in the canopy to rest or search for food.

“On one of the afternoons, one of the bee-eaters arrived at its perch with a wasp in its beak. After repeated bashes on the branch to knock out the wasp in typical bee-eater fashion, this prey item was duly swallowed (below).

Dr. Leong Tzi Ming
8th November 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.

Other posts by YC Wee

2 Responses

  1. Hi Tzi Ming

    An uncommon sighting and lucky you.
    Appreciated delayed posting- chicks having fledged by now.



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