Plain Sunbird – feeding behaviour

on 5th May 2013

“Over the years, I have observed the Plain Sunbird (Anthreptes simplex) feeding on a variety of foods:
1. The small black fruit/seeds of the Blue Mahang (Macaranga heynei) – their favourite.
2. Fruit of the Common Mahang (Macaranga bancana)
3. Animal prey including spiders

“Wells (2007) states “No confirmation of this behaviour (nectar feeding) seems to exist for the review area.”

“Today was able to better document them actually feeding on nectar. Images above and left are of the male feeding on nectar. But both adults spent much time with the flowers. The tree they were feeding on in not native to this forest but planted by nearby villagers. It is Mimusops elengi (common names: Tanjung, Maulsari, Spanish cherry, Medlar, Bullet wood).

“Previously I have seen them feed on the nectar of the mistletoe semi-parasite flowers but images were limited.

“The above images are of an adult female with animal prey and the obligatory branch swipe to clean the bill after feeding.”

Dato’ Dr Amar-Singh HSS
Kledang-Sayong Forest Reserve, Ipoh, Perak, Malaysia
2nd April 2013

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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