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Tanimbar Corella and the Beach Barringtonia fruit

on 16th October 2015

Ananth Ramasamy photographed a Tanimbar Corella (Cacatua goffini) gnawing into the unripe fruit of the Beach Barringtonia (Barringtonia asiatica) (above).

A tree that is found along the coastal areas, it is sometimes grown in gardens and parks because of the large, attractive flowers (above) and lantern-like fruits (below). Every morning when the tree is in flowers, the ring of long stamens litter the ground below, attracting attention to it.

The tree is also known as Poison Fish Tree. A stream is dammed and the pounded fruits thrown into the water. The saponins they contain stun the fish that is then collected as they float to the surface.

Tanimbar Corella is also known to eat seeds of Pong Pong (Cerbera odollam), also reputed to be poisonous. It also gnaws into woody and semi-woody fruits for the seeds that most other birds avoid, like those of Drumstick (Moringa olifera), Sea Almond (Terminalia catappa) and Golden Shower (Cassia fistula).

Note: Image of Tanimbar Corella eating Beach Barringtonia fruit by Ananth Ramasamy, those of fruit and flower by YC Wee.

This post is a cooperative effort between Birds, Insects N Creatures Of Asia and BESG to bring the study of birds and their behavior through photography and videography to a wider audience.

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

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