“Recently I found some flattened pods of the Yellow flame (Peltophorum pterocarpum) tree on the ground, which appeared to have been bitten and the seeds extracted (above).
“I had initially thought it could have been a squirrel, but I was unsure as I have not seen any around that area. Hence I suspected that birds would have been responsible.
“The location is along Yishun Ring Road. I send you a couple of photos.
“I got up very early today and stationed myself at about 6.30 am on the fifth floor of the block of flats opposite the road, and across where the Yellow Flame tree stands. It was nearly 7.00 am when the first bird appeared, followed by more birds.
“I identified them as the Rose-ringed Parakeets (Psittacula krameri) and I counted about 6 birds in this flock. They fed for about 20 minutes on the pods before flying off (above).
“The sky was grey and overcast and hence the lighting was poor, but I managed to get some reasonable photos using the long lens of my camera.
“I think the flock included males and females, and from the photos, the birds would use either their left or right leg to hold on to a pod while tearing into it to extract the seeds. The pods are then discarded and these fell to the ground. There are other Yellow Flame trees with pods along the road, but I have only found bitten pods under just this one tree.”
This is a new food record. Neither Collar (1997) nor Wells (1999) mentioned this tree.
14th April 2016
1. Collar, N. J. 1997. Family Columbidae Psittacidae (parrots). In: del Hoyo, J., A. Elliott & J. Sargatal (eds.), Handbook of the birds of the world. Vol. 4. Sandgrouse to Cuckoos. Lynx Editions, Barcelona. Pp. 280-477.
2. Wells, D.R., 1999. The birds of the Thai-Malay Peninsular. Vol. I, Non-passerines. Academic Press, London. 648 pp.