Red Junglefowl Roundup Part III

on 20th September 2013

“Following the BESG report Red Junglefowl Roundup Part I of 27th June 2013 LINK, the black hen Putri Hitam which is most like to be a mix breed RJF, has produced a brood of 2 chicks, as shown in the attached pic taken on 4th July (above). One of the chicks has black feathers exactly like the mother, while the other one shows brown down feather on the head. The later did not survive for long though. With prolific production cycle, Putri Hitam left the black chick to brood again when it was only about 4 weeks old.

“The attached pic, taken just this morning (above), shows the chick at the age of about 8 weeks. It is unusually big when compared to other RJF chicks at the same age, probably because it enjoyed special treatment from the tenant who reared both Putri Hitam and Lao San as chicks but released them together before they reached sexual maturity.

“Towards the end of August, Putri Hitam reappeared with a brood of 8 chicks. It is impossible to know who is/are the father/s as there are 3 adult males around.

“The above video taken on 1st September shows it with 4 different coloured chicks. Out of the new brood, 3 had been taken away by the tenant and 1 did not survive. The sight of a black hen and a normal looking offspring appears rather incongruent. It was interesting to learn from the tenant that the mother did not complain when he took the chicks away.

“The above edited video shows Putri Hitam feeding on Weaver Ants (Oecophylla smaragdina) on the perimeter fence during one of its brooding breaks on 1st August. The ants are not visible in the video when the hen is picking them up. However, they are frequently seen on the fence and are known to nest in plants such as young Sea Apple (Syzygium grande) and Waringin (Ficus benjamina) which sprouts too near to the fence and hence often missed by the grass cutters. A close-up video clip of the ants scurrying along the fence recorded on 2nd September was weaved in to make the edited video more interesting.æ

Sun Chong Hong
3rd September 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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