Olive-backed Sunbird having a leaf bath

“A male Olive-backed Sunbird (Cinnyris jugularis) was moving from one leaf to another of the Scarlet Spiral Flag (Costus woodsonii) plants to soak in the droplets of water collected from an earlier slight drizzle.

“The leaf fits in nicely with the size of the sunbird if it lies lengthwise on it. However, because of the sunbird’s weight, it invariably slides down the leaf. To counter being thrown off the leaf, the sunbird either scrambled to change its position to lie crosswise on the point where the leaf is attached to the stem. At times the sunbird flew off to another leaf and repeated the process. Most of the water droplets were soaked up by the breast and throat feathers.

“The video of the leaf baths is rather amusing to watch.”

YC Wee
Singapore
25th December 2018

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