Asian Glossy Starlings feasting on Alexandra Palm fruits

posted in: Feeding-plants, Videography | 0

“Most evenings flocks of adults and juveniles Asian Glossy Starling (Aplonis panayensis) gather at the pair of Ceram Palms (Rhopaloblaste ceramica) in my garden just before they fly off to their night roost elsewhere. And during this short period, many would gather at the fruiting Alexandra Palm (Archontophoenix alexandrae) to feast on the fruits.

“The starlings would move around the different fruiting branches to seek out the ripe fruits before swallowing them whole LINK.

“Many a times they would fail to swallow the 10×12 mm fruits, especially the juveniles whose gape is not as wide as the adults. Such fruits would simply fall to the ground and the starling would seek out another.

“The fruit has a thin layer of pulp and swallowing them means swallowing mostly seeds than pulp. This creates extra bulk and weight in the alimentary system that in turn interferes in the starling’s agility during flight. So what happens is that the fruits are processed in the crop to remove the superficial pulp and the seeds are regurgitated soon after. Such a strategy allows the starlings to take in more fruits at one ‘sitting’ than if they are to allow the large seeds to slowly pass through the system to be finally exected at the other end.

“Earlier postings of starlings and the Alexandra Palm fruits can be accessed HERE and HERE.”

YC Wee
January 2016

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