Chestnut-headed Bee-eater – juveniles

posted in: Bee-eaters, bird, Morphology-Develop. | 0

Our home is regularly visited by Chestnut-headed Bee-eater (Merops leschenaulti leschenaultia) in the mornings and evenings. They come to feed on the Dwarf Honey Bee (Apis andreniformis) nesting in our wild urban garden.

The Chestnut-headed Bee-eaters are very communal and roost overnight together on bare branches of trees in the city; I have seen flocks of 70-300. Some have taken to roosting about ½km from our home.

Recently we noticed that some stay over for the whole day. I had a look from the roof and there were 3 staying for the day, all were immature birds, self-feeding. They took large numbers of bees in a short time. It could be that some adults ‘stash’ their young at our home and go on further to the fringe of the city to feed.

Images show the immature frontal green plumage, the lack of chestnut on the nape and the moulting tail.

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

Location: Ipoh, Perak, Malaysia
Habitat: Urban environment
Date: 25th July 2020
Equipment: Equipment: Nikon D500 SLR with Nikon AF-S Nikkor 500mm f/5.6E PF ED VR, handheld with Rode VideoMic Pro Plus Shotgun Microphone

Follow YC Wee:

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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