Search

Red-whiskered Bulbul: 2. Incubation

on 5th May 2015

After completing the nest LINK, the pair of Red-whiskered Bulbul (Pycnonotus jocosus) was absent for a few days from the Belimbing (Averrhoa carambola) nesting tree. Then one day the female returned, stayed for some time and laid an egg.

Unlike the period when the pair was building their nest when the air was filled with their loud songs, the early incubation period was a much quieter affair. But I did capture a more discreet series of five different songs alerting the bird in the nest by its partner coming to relieve it of its incubating duty (video below).

In another clip below, the pair was seen flying in together. As one flew into the nest to incubate the egg/s, the other flew through.

However, during the later periods between the bulbul flying out of the nest and the mate subsequently flying in, there were, at times, loud singing and duetting. Duetting did not involve the incubating bulbul.

According to Fishpool & Tobias (2005), two to four eggs (usually three) are laid and incubation last 12-14 days. According to Wells (2007), both adults tend to the nestlings and fledglings but no mention of egg incubation.

As the adult in the nest flew off, the other may be around but would only enter the nest after a lapse of some time. The pair sometimes flew to the tree together, one entering the nest while the other flew onwards. At other times the mate was conspicuously absent, at least not captured by the videocam.

YC Wee
Singapore
April 2015

Reference:
1.
Fishpool, L. D. C. & J. A. Tobias, 2005. Family Pycnonotidae (bulbuls). In: del Hoyo, J., A. Elliott & D. A. Christie (eds.), Handbook of the birds of the world. Vol. 10. Cucuoo-shrikes to Thrushes. Lynx Editions, Barcelona. Pp. 124-251.
2. Wells, D.R., 2007. The birds of the Thai-Malay Peninsular. Vol. II, Passerines. Christopher Helm, London. 800 pp.

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

One Response

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Categories
Archives

Overall visits (since 2005)

Live visitors
620
7126
Visitors Today
51450917
Total
Visitors

Clustrmaps (since 2016)