Greater Racket-tailed Drongo – immature vs adult and calls

posted in: birds, Vocalisation | 0

I saw these two Greater Racket-tailed Drongo (Dicrurus paradiseus/platurus) hawking insects as a ‘family’ unit. I initially thought they were a pair (male-female) with one having a moult of the tail feather (racket). But in the composite (below) you can see that the bird on the left has an iris that is not as bright red (juveniles have brown iris), a less developed fore-crown tuft, some wing moult, some brown in the plumage and tail feathers that are developing. So a family unit of two, with an adult parent and an immature bird.

These two birds I saw were also very vocal, calling out individually oras a ‘duet’. A call recording is available here (composite of 3 recordings):

A sonogram and waveform of the ‘basic’ loud advertising calls ‘kliyop’ is shown above.

A sonogram and waveform of the ‘duet’ calls is shown above.


Amar-Singh HSS (Dato’ Dr)

Ipoh, Perak, Malaysia


Location: Kledang-Sayong Forest Reserve, Ipoh, Perak, Malaysia

Habitat: Broken trail in primary jungle

Date: 25th November 2019

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

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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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