According to BESG’s updated Plant-Bird Relationship (Version 3.0), we have records of 12 species of birds feeding on the fruits of Singapore Rhododendron (Melastoma malabathricum), a common weedy shrub. Surprisingly, Javan Myna (Acridotheres javanicus), an omnivorous species and one of the commonest birds in Singapore, is not among them.
I checked with three major reference books on birds (Craig & Feare, 2009; Feare & Craig, 1998; Wells, 2007) but none lists fruits of Singapore Rhododendron among the plant diet of Javan Myna.
I presume everyone assumes that Javan Myna eats these fruits but no one reports it. For the record, my video clip showing this myna eating the fruits was an accidental documentation (see below).
5th November 2017
1. Craig, A. J. F. K. & C. J. Feare, 2009. Family Sturnidae (Starlings). In: del Hoyo, J., A. Elliott & D. A. Christie (eds.). Handbook of the birds of the world. Vol. 14. Bush-shrikes to Old World Sparrows. Lynx Editions, Barcelona. Pp. 654-758.
2. Feare, C. & A. Craig, 1998. Starlings and mynas. Christopher Helm (Publishers) Ltd., London. 285 pp.
3. Wells, D.R., 2007. The birds of the Thai-Malay Peninsular. Vol. II, Passerines. Christopher Helm, London. 800 pp.
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