Little Cormorant – nesting site

on 20th February 2022

Post 1.

I recently reported the first nesting site for Little Cormorants (Microcarbo niger) that I had been observing since 2014. See: Amar-Singh HSS. (2020). Little Cormorant Microcarbo niger nesting in Peninsular Malaysia. BirdingASIA 33: 114–117. In that report I mentioned encroaching developments to the island and a poor local track record by the authorities of protecting nature sites. Late in 2020 the nesting site (also used by many other species) had been completely abandoned as it had become very exposed and was possibly poached. As a result, the more than 200 Little Cormorants that use the site have dispersed their nesting sites.

Post 2.

Recently some of us became aware of one such site that was in a fallen Samanea saman (Rain Tree), still alive, at the edge of an ex-mining pool. Currently at least 10 pairs of Little Cormorants are actively nesting there with at least 4 Little Egrets nests, 2 Grey Herons nests and possibly 1 Night Heron nest (located at the back but hard to see). Many more have used the site as birds are present at all stages – birds nest building, birds incubating eggs, juveniles in the nest, fledged juveniles, immatures and empty nests. The site was very active with adults coming frequently to feed young.

Post 3.

Sadly this location is adjacent to a busy road and I have concerns about its sustainability. I was able to watch safely from the car and bird behaviour did not appear to change appreciably by my brief presence.

I found the feeding of fledged juveniles very ‘dramatic’. The adult would arrive and land on a branch near the juvenile. The juvenile would place the bill and part of the head into the adult’s mouth to access the regurgitated feeds (Post 1-2).

Post 3 is an immature bird, self-feeding. Post 4 is an adult in breeding plumage.

Post 4.

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

Location: Malim Nawar, Perak, Malaysia

Habitat: Ex-mining pools, fish farming, extensive wetlands

Date: 7th January 2021

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

If you like this post please tap on the Like button at the left bottom of page. Any views and opinions expressed in this article are solely those of the authors/contributors, and are not endorsed by the Lee Kong Chian Natural History Museum (LKCNHM, NUS) or its affiliated institutions. Readers are encouraged to use their discretion before making any decisions or judgements based on the information presented.

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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