On 5th March 2016, Jeremiah Loei chanced upon a male Common Iora (Aegithina tiphia) behaving in a rather strange and unusual manner. He documented the phenomenon, posted the video clip below on Birds, Insects N Creatures of Asia Facebook and appealed for anyone who can explain the behavior.
BESG sent the clip to veteran Malaysian birdwatcher Dato’ Dr Amar-Singh HSS and this is his reply:
“This is an adult male Common Iora in breeding plumage. The behaviour shown is clearly a form of ‘display’. The meaning of it would depend on the context.
“Was there a female nearby? In which case I am sure it was a breeding courtship display. Although the calls used are usually more melodious.
“If there was another male then it could be a display to ward off a ‘rival’.
“A final possibility is to defend a nesting site against a parasitic bird.
“I suspect it was courtship display to win a female.”
Credit: Jeremiah Loei (video) & Dato’ Dr Amar-Singh HSS (interpretation).
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.