Birds and the Golden Penda trees


The Golden Penda (Xanthostemon chrysanthus) is a common roadside tree in Singapore. Each tree has its own flowering cycle, producing bunches of yellow blossoms that attract insects and birds (above). The nectar is the main attraction and many birds visit in the early mornings and late evenings to sip on the flower nectar. Bees and other insects are plentiful and these in turn attract insectivorous birds LINK.

So far we have documented Brown-throated Sunbird (Anthreptes malacensis), Blue-crowned Hanging Parrot (Loriculus galgulus), Rainbow Lorikeet (Trichoglossus haematodus), Yellow-vented Bulbul (Pycnonotus goiavier) and Javan Myna (Acridotheres javanicus) LINK, as well as Red-whiskered Bulbul (Pycnonotus jocosus pattani) LINK.

To these, I am adding Black-naped Oriole (Oriolus chinensis). In the video above the oriole can be seen catching small insects (bigger insects need to be bashed against the perch) and after swallowing them the bill is swiped against the branch.

The Javan Mynas come in the late evenings for the nectar (video above). Also seen in the video are Oriental White-eye (Zosterops palpebrosus), and Common Flameback (Dinopium javanense). These (also new additions) come to forage for insects, although the white-eye may go for the nectar as well. The myna has been reported earlier but not the white-eye and flameback.

Indeed, the Golden Penda, besides providing colour to our roadside trees when in flowers, attracts wildlife back to the urban areas.

YC Wee
17th November 2017

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