Nesting of the Common Iora: 2. Incubation

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“I recently posted a pair of Common Ioras (Aegithina tiphia horizoptera) collecting spider web for their nest LINK. They are nesting in our immediate home environment and hence observations have become easy and frequent.

“They laid eggs on 9th May and I have been keeping a close eye as incubation and fledging periods are unreported locally (Wells 2007). This is a preliminary report from 9-20th May. The minimum observations in a day are 8 and often observations are almost continual throughout the day. I have chosen not to visualise the eggs or image them.

1. The nest is located 2.5 meters up on outer edge of small tree, just above eye level.

2. Both parents incubate the eggs but the female does so to a larger extent:

a. In the past 12 days the female is the one to end the evening in the nest. She is also the first bird we see in the nest in the early morning. So we are certain that only the female incubates over night (above).

b. The male does incubate but for short periods throughout the day, during which the female feeds (above).

3. During the day, when the female is incubating, the male will keep in touch with regular contact calls. The common call used HERE and a sonogram plus waveform are given below. The calls are made as frequent as every 15-20 seconds or as infrequent as every 3-5 minutes. We hear them throughout the day as our bedroom and living room are very close to the nest.

4. The male is silent when incubating. He only calls when in the nest at change over time. On two occasions I investigated when his call intensity and volume increased and found that he was beside the nest and looking for the female to come and incubate. On both these occasions he had to return to the nest as the female did not immediately return.

Dato’ Dr Amar-Singh HSS
Ipoh, Perak, Malaysia
9-20th May 2014

Location: Canning Garden Home, Ipoh City, Perak, Malaysia
Habitat: Wild urban garden

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