Birds feeding on termites or flying ants is an experience I have enjoyed since childhood. I occasional get to see these mixed species aerial insect feeding in forest locations. At 7.45am on 4th August 2022 at the Kledang Saiong Forest Reserve, Ipoh, Perak, Malaysia, I had an opportunity to observe another occurrence.
On this occasion it comprised a number of Greater Racket-tailed Drongos (Dicrurus paradiseus), Asian Fairy Bluebirds (Irena puella malayensis), Red-eyed Bulbuls (Pycnonotus brunneus) and Yellow-vented Bulbuls (Pycnonotus goiavier). All these were expected birds. The surprise was seeing a number Gold-whiskered Barbets (Psilopogon chrysopogon) also feeding on these insects. They were not as competent as the Greater Racket-tailed Drongos (see image 1) in catching prey but did manage to get some insects (see image 2).
Birds seen in the past at mixed species aerial insect feeding include:
Greater Racket-tailed Drongo (Dicrurus paradiseus)
Other Drongos (Possibly Black Drongo)
Asian Drongo Cuckoo (Surniculus lugubris)
Indian Cuckoo (Cuculus micropterus concretus)
Common Flameback (Dinopium javanense)
Green-billed Malkoha (Phaenicophaeus tristis)
Dollarbird (Eurystomus orientalis orientalis)
House Crow (Corvus splendens protegatus)
White-throated Kingfisher (Halcyon smyrnensis)
Pacific Swallow (Hirundo tahitica javanica)
Blue-tailed Bee-eater (Merops philippinus)
Blue-throated Bee-eater (Merops viridis)
Chestnut-headed Bee-eater (Merops leschenaulti)
Purple-backed Starling (Sturnus sturninus)
Pied Fantail (Rhipidura javanica)
Pied Triller (Lalage nigra)
Brown Shrike (Lanius cristatus)
Black-naped Oriole (Oriolus chinensis maculates)
Oriental Magpie Robin (Copsychus saularis saularis)
Common Myna (Acridotheres tristis tristis)
Yellow-vented Bulbul (Pycnonotus goiavier)
Asian Glossy Starling (Aplonis panayensis strigata)
Eurasian Tree Sparrow (Passer montanus malaccensis)
Baya Weaver (Ploceus philippinus infortunatus).
Dato’ Dr Amar-Singh HSS
Ipoh, Perak, Malaysia
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