A Long-tailed Shrike (Lanius schach) was documented mobbing a Barn Owl (Tyto alba) at Punggol. The tiny shrike flew straight towards the larger owl that was roosting on a branch of a tree in an effort to chase it away from but without success. The owl, being a nocturnal bird, was roosting during the day. However its presence posed a threat to smaller birds and needed to be chased away.
Such mobbing is a regular occurrence. Smaller birds that mob larger birds like owls and raptors include drongo mobbing the Barred Eagle-owl (Bubo sumatranus), take great risks as the latter bird may react by attacking and killing the much smaller attackers. However, in most cases the subject of the attacker simply move away without any retaliation.
Crows regularly mob all types of raptors, including owls. Once a crow indulges in mobbing, other crows usually join in and with the increasing in number of crows, the victim will invariably leave the site.
12th May 2019
This post is a cooperative effort between Birds, Insects N Creatures Of Asia and BESG to bring the study of birds and their behaviour through photography and videography to a wider audience.