Crimson-breasted Flowerpecker – Juvenile to Adult Progression

posted in: birds, Morphology-Develop. | 0

I saw this young (immature) self-feeding Flowerpecker at the forest edge in Ipoh on 22nd July 2021 (below). It had a white malar stripe developing with some yellow in the breast. There was a thick orange bill tipped with black. There was no orange or scarlet patch on the crown (had more images to see this well).

This is a juvenile/immature Crimson-breasted Flowerpecker (Prionochilus percussus ignicapilla). At present it is hard to say a male or female.

Having seen many juveniles over the years I thought I would extract a few images and show the progression from a young juvenile to adulthood in the composite image (below):

Birds 1 and 2 are a younger and older juvenile.

One of the first signs of change is the bill tip becoming black (No 2) with some yellow in the breast & an early malar flash. By this time they are self-feeding.

Bird 3 is an immature female – it had an orange crown patch, a darker bill and more yellow in the breast.

Bird 4 is an immature male – it had a darker bill, deeper yellow in the breast and blue appearing above.

Bird 5 is an adult female.

Bird 6 is an adult male.


Amar-Singh HSS (Dato’ Dr)
Ipoh, Perak, Malaysia

22 July 2021


Location: Dasyueshan National Forest Recreation Area, Taichung City County, Taiwan

Habitat: 2400 meter ASL, forested region.

Equipment: Nikon D500 SLR with Tamron SP 150-600mm f/5-6.3 Di VC USD, handheld with Rode VideoMic Pro Plus Shotgun Microphone.


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Dr Wee played a significant role as a green advocate in Singapore through his extensive involvement in various organizations and committees: as Secretary and Chairman for the Malayan Nature Society (Singapore Branch), and with the Nature Society (Singapore) as founding President (1978-1995). He has also served in the Nature Reserve Board (1987-1989), Nature Reserves Committee (1990-1996), National Council on the Environment/Singapore Environment Council (1992-1996), Work-Group on Nature Conservation (1992) and Inter-Varsity Council on the Environment (1995-1997). He is Patron of the Singapore Gardening Society and was appointed Honorary Museum Associate of the Lee Kong Chian Natural History Museum (LKCNHM) in 2012. In 2005, Dr Wee started the Bird Ecology Study Group. With more than 6,000 entries, the website has become a valuable resource consulted by students, birdwatchers and researchers locally and internationally. The views and opinions expressed in this article are his own, and do not represent those of LKCNHM, the National University of Singapore or its affiliated institutions.

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