Malayan Box Turtle ( Cuora amboinensis) rights itself

An upside down Malayan box turtle, Cuora amboinensis, was seen righting itself.  The video below by Francis Seow-Choen shows the turtle failed on the first attempt but got it right on the second.

Photo 1. The upside down turtle extended its neck and pushed its head against the ground.
Photo 2. As force was applied on its head, it extended its limbs and flailed them around.
Photo 3. The turtle managed to tip its body onto its left side.
Photo 4. After righting itself, it stuck its head and limbs out and slowly ambled away.

Francis Seow-Choen’s video showing the upside down turtle right itself after two attempts.

These turtles inhabit freshwater bodies like streams, ponds and lakes. The animals are native to large parts of South-East Asia and the surrounding islands. They are often seen feeding on vegetation and fruits but will take invertebrates like earthworms and slugs too. The tell-tale yellow stripes on the head helps in the identification of this species.

They are often found in Chinese temples and devotees often release these turtles into the wild.  It is also often seeked out as medicinal food.

References:

  1. https://www.ecologyasia.com/verts/turtles/malayan_box_terrapin.htm#:~:text=The%20Malayan%20Box%20Terrapin%20inhabits,inside%20the%20fully%20closed%20shell.

2. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Amboina_box_turtle

3. A guide to the Amphibians and Reptiles of Singapore by Kelvin KP Lim and Francis LK Lim ©1992

All photos are screengrabs from Francis Seow-Choen’s video.

Article by Teo Lee Wei

Black-throated Sunbird – new nectar source

posted in: birds, Feeding-plants | 0

I saw this female Black-throated Sunbird (Aethopyga saturata wrayi) feeding on the nectar of a buttonbush. This flowering plant is in the family Rubiaceae but does not fit the local Nauclea orientalis (leaves, flower colours all not right). The much better fit would be Cephalanthus occidentalis but this is a native to eastern and southern North America. It is still possible, as we have many introduced plants in the country. Using “Gardner, Sidisunthorn, Chayamarit. 2018. Forest Trees of Southern Thailand, Volume 3” there a number of Rubiaceae plans in the Neonauclea genus that are also a possibility. However although appearing as part of a tree, it is actually a creeper (see hooks), often high in a foliage of a tree (have seen this plant a number of times).

 

Amar-Singh HSS (Dato’ Dr)

Ipoh, Perak, Malaysia

 

Location: 1,700m ASL, Cameron Highlands, Pahang, Malaysia

Habitat: Primary montane forest

Date: 4th March 2019

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

 

Eurasian Wryneck – a vagrant to Peninsular Malaysia?

posted in: birds, Migration-Migrants | 0

There have been 4 sightings of the Eurasian wryneck (Jynx torquilla) recorded so far on eBird and 1 (that I am aware of) on Malayan Nature Society Perak Bird Group Facebook:

  1. 1990-10-17 at Malim Nawar, Perak by Lim Kim Chye
  2. 2007-01-15 at Sungai Dua ricefields, Pulau Pinang by
  3. 2012-01-02 and 2012-01-23 at Ladang Tebu FELDA, Chuping, Perlis by Bee-Cheng Ng and Dave Bakewell respectively.
  4. 2014-01-25 at Kuala Kubu Bahru, Selangor by Terence Ang
  5. 2017-12-03 near Ipoh City, Perak by Simon Ho (FB report)

I saw a Eurasian Wryneck at the outskirts of Ipoh City, Perak today, 17th January 2022. I fortunately saw the bird, from a distance, before it saw me. It was close to the ground and I managed a few distant images (above, below). Once it spotted me it immediately ‘disappeared’. I attempted to relocate the bird but failed.

It may have arrived on migration yearly, perhaps a few birds each year (1-3) but easily missed, as the locations spotted may be less popular with bird watchers. Also, it had good plumage for camouflage and is often noted as foraging on or close to the ground.

Mike HN Chong of Selangor, Malaysia had this to say: “Excellent find! This individual looks to me, not a full adult yet?

“Agree that it’s more a rare migrant than a vagrant in recent years, although the gaps in the years of sightings are pretty much uniform i.e. 2-3 years from 2012-2017? I am not sure if it’s a ‘common migrant’ though. Even the Chestnut-winged Cuckoo which is regularly sighted over recent years, I don’t think can be called a common migrant. It is more uncommon unless there’re many sighting all over to support this. Asian Brown Flycatcher to me is a common migrant.”

Agree that its cryptic plumage and very shy behaviour (as you attested) make it harder to spot. Moreover, the open/secondary belukar/parkland(?) area you may have seen it is not a prime birding or photographers’ location. So it may be missed due to this habitat preference by birders, etc.

Much like the Eurasian hoopoe (Upupa epops) which prefer open/parkland habitats, It also could be overlooked, like Eurasian wryneck. Of course with recent discovery hoopooe this could be a breeding resident again in Peninsula Malaysia!

Postscript:

I suspect the key habitat is ex-tin mining ‘wetlands’ where there is water, wetland vegetation as well as some dry sandy areas. After all…

  1. Lim Kim Chye (1990-10-17) saw his at Malim Nawar, Perak – ex-tin mining ponds used for fish farming.
  2. Simon Ho (2017-12-03) saw his at Kinta Nature Park near Batu Gajah  – ex-tin mining ponds with lots of wetlands habitat.
  3. Terence Ang (2014-01-25) sighting was next to an ex-tin mining pond at Kuala Kubu Bahru, Selangor.
  4. My observation (2022-01-17) was also an ex-tin mining pond area with some fish farming.
  5. Dave Bakewell (2007-01-15) at Sungai Dua, Pulau Pinang was a rice fields habitat.
  6. Bee-Cheng Ng and Dave Bakewell (2012-01-02 and 2012-01-23) was at a FELDA  estate (Oil Palm?) at Chuping, Perlis.

 So overall I suspect a wetlands habitat, especially ex-tin mining areas is the best bet.

This is in contrast to the native breeding habitat which is more wooded but while on migration may be more at ‘wet’ or ‘sandy’ areas.

Winkler, H., D. A. Christie, and G. M. Kirwan (2020). Eurasian Wryneck (Jynx torquilla), version 1.0. In Birds of the World (J. del Hoyo, A. Elliott, J. Sargatal, D. A. Christie, and E. de Juana, Editors). Cornell Lab of Ornithology, Ithaca, NY, USA. https://doi.org/10.2173/bow.eurwry.01 state:

“Open forest, clearings, woodland with low undergrowth, wooded pasture, and unimproved meadowland with scattered trees, so long as dry and sunlit, and grass areas not too well developed; avoids damper vegetation and higher mountains. Prefers open riparian forest, and lighter parts of more closed mixed or deciduous broadleaf forest and forest edge; also copses, avenues, plantations, parks, orchards, larger gardens, non-intensive farmland; locally, also pure stands of pine (Pinus) or larch (Larix). In non-breeding season, open dry woodland, bushy grassland and gardens, in S Asia typically in scrub, thickets, also in canopy of forest and in cultivations; overwinterers in S Europe found mostly in coastal wetlands and maquisMigrants also in treeless open habitats, including desert. Mostly lowlands to c. 1000 m, occasionally higher, in Europe to 1600 m in Alps and Caucasus; in Himalayas, breeds at 1500–3300 m; non-breeders to 1800 m in SE Asia.”

 

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

17th and 19th January 2022

 

Eurasian coot (Fulica atra) feed young chicks with aquatic plants

Photo 1. Mother and baby coot. Wonthaggi, Australia. October 2015

 

Photo 2. Mother coot dives into the water by leaping off the water first. Wonthaggi, Australia. October 2015

 

Photo 3: Mother feeds her baby a small tender morsel of aquatic plant. Wonthaggi, Australia. October 2015

 

Fulica atra, the Eurasian coot, are birds which belong to the Family Rallidae. The coots are conspicuous in their range, unlike their cousins (rails, crakes and moorhens) which are normally shy and secretive. The birds are frequently encountered around the coastal cities of Australia where there are ponds, lakes or wetlands. The sexes are similar in appearance though males are slightly larger than the females.  The slate-grey body, white beak and shield together with red eyes gather in large numbers on the water bodies.  They graze on land and dive for food in water. The diet comprises aquatic plants, algae, shoots, seeds, invertebrates, amphibians and fish. The digits are webbed at intervals, giving the digits the appearance of strings of beads. They are excellent swimmers.

Wong Kais observed a mother bird diving for aquatic plants to feed her two chicks which were disparate in size.  Eggs are incubated as they are laid and the chicks hatch asynchronously. The chicks are precocial, that is, they are quite matured at hatching and are able to run and swim. However, they still require the parents to feed them young, tender morsels.

References:

  1. Wildlife of Australia by Iain Campbell and Sam Woods © 2013
  2. Cronin’s Key Guide to Australian Wildlife by Leonard Cronin © 2007
  3. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Eurasian_coot

All photos and video © Wong Kais.

Article by Teo Lee Wei

Raffles’ Banded Langurs sighted at Lower Peirce Reservoir

posted in: Feeding, Mammals, Raffles' Banded Langur | 0

 

Photo 1. An individual feeding, seen in close-up view.

 

Photo 2. The single white line, one of the characteristic identifying features of the species, running down its abdomen is visible from this view.

 

The Raffles Banded Langur (Presbytis femoralis femoralis) is also known as the Raffles’ surili and the banded leaf monkey.  It is an Old World Monkey that is native to Singapore. The monkey measures approximately 60 cm from head to body and the long, non-prehensile tail measures up to 84 cm.  At last estimate about 60 of them live in the Central Catchment Nature Region.  They are seldom spotted or encountered.

These diurnal and arboreal creatures gather in groups of up to 6. The groups usually comprise a male and females and juveniles. The babies are usually white or grey, though orange ones have been sighted too.  The diet is made up of leaves, seeds and fruits and the occasional insects. As they prefer to inhabit dipterocarp forests, the creatures are critically endangered as a result of habitat loss and scarcity of food plants.

Dr Ow Boon Hin was blessed with the sighting of 2 individuals at the Lower Peirce Reservoir on 20 January 2022.

Video shows 2 monkeys feeding on the tree top.  The long tails are used as extra props to help them balance themselves. Towards the end of the video the monkey is seen with its tail twined lightly around the tree.

All photos and video © Dr Ow Boon Hin.

Article by Teo Lee Wei

References:

  1. Biodiversity of Singapore: An encyclopedia of the Natural Environment and Sustainable Development © 2011 Edited by: Peter KL Ng, Richard T. Corlett and Hugh T. W. Tan
  2. Guide to the Threatened Animals of Singapore © 1995. Edited by Peter K.L. Ng
  3. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Raffles%27_banded_langur

Continuing the discussion on Yellow Wagtails

posted in: birds, Miscellaneous | 0
The earlier post on the Yellow Wagtails (Motacilla flava) can be found HERE.
James Eaton was kind enough to respond and wrote “Tschutschensis – such a fine supercilium. Taivana would be much broader. Taivana is the rarest of three in the Peninsular too. Eastern can be easily separated from Western on the call – much more strident. I would doubt thunbergi makes it here regularly, especially given the lack of confirmation from elsewhere in Southeast Asia and the Andamans”
According to Alström et al 2003, as reported in Bot et al 2014 “Taivana has a broad supercilium, which reaches the bill, is often noticeable square-ended and is broad along its entire length, whereas tschutschensis often has a fine supercilium, not reaching the base of the bill and ending behind the eye in a point.”
The above composite of different birds at different times, is based on supercilium and focusing on tschutschensis and taivana.
The second composite above show dark headed birds and possible thunbergi or macronyx or plexa; especially the top 2 birds. Bottom 2 have some supercilium and need to be more cautious.

Finally another nice confiding tschutschensis as shown above and below.

Amar-Singh HSS (Dato’ Dr) – Ipoh, Perak, Malaysia
Location: Malim Nawar, Perak, Malaysia
Habitat: Ex-mining pools, fish farming, wetlands
Date: 2nd November 2018
Equipment: Nikon D500 SLR with Tamron SP 150-600mm f/5-6.3 Di VC USD, handheld

Long-billed Spiderhunter – nectar feeding

posted in: birds, Feeding-plants | 0

Post 1

I am grateful to a bird watching colleague who alerted us to the presence of, the less commonly seen, Long-billed Spiderhunters (Arachnothera robusta robusta) at this location, adjacent to extensive limestone outcroppings. There were 4 species of Spiderhunters feeding high up on the nectar of Spathodea campanulata (African Tulip Tree) at the site this morning:

  1. Long-billed Spiderhunter Arachnothera robusta robusta – 3 birds
  2. Grey-breasted Spiderhunter Arachnothera modesta modesta – 1 bird
  3. Spectacled Spiderhunter Arachnothera flavigaster – 2 birds
  4. Yellow-eared Spiderhunter Arachnothera chrysogenys chrysogenys – 1 bird

Post 2

I am assuming nectar feeding of the Spathodea campanulata as they all dip their heads into the large flowers. However note that literature does indicate that these flowers have some toxin in the flower/nectar that kills bees and other insects. The Spathodea campanulata is an introduced plant (exotic) that is widely grown for its bright flowers.

Post 3

Post 4

There was some competitive feeding and I noticed that the Long-billed Spiderhunter was the most timid, being chased from feeding locations by both the Grey-breasted and Spectacled Spiderhunters. The Long-billed Spiderhunter was also seen feeding on the nectar of the Bauhinia blakeana (Hong Kong Orchid Tree); another exotic plant; feeding was by fluttering to gain access to the nectar. The Long-billed Spiderhunter has a very long tongue that can protrude almost the length of the beak (see Post 2). The beak is strongly down-curved (Post 4). The tail is sooty black on the upper surface and tipped white, best seen on the ventral surface (Post 3 & Post 2).

Post 5.

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

Location: Perak, Malaysia

Habitat: Secondary growth adjacent to limestone outcroppings

Date: 30th November 2020

Equipment: Nikon D500 SLR with Nikon AF-S Nikkor 500mm f/5.6E PF ED VR, handheld with Rode VideoMic Pro Plus Shotgun Microphone

 

New species observed feeding on Giant Mahang fruit

posted in: birds, Feeding-plants | 0

I saw two new bird species feeding on the fruit of a Giant Mahang (Macaranga gigantea) that was located on a trail in primary forest. The fruit of the Giant Mahang attracts many birds and mammals. The Giant Mahang is a towering tree when fully grown at 15-20 metres with a spreading crown.

Checker-throated Woodpecker

I observed a pair of Checker-throated Woodpecker (Yellownaped) Chrysophlegma (mentale) humii feeding extensively on Giant Mahang fruit. In the past I have observed 2 other woodpeckers, the Crimson-winged and Banded Woodpecker, feeding on this fruit.

I also saw a number of White-bellied Erpornis (Erpornis zantholeuca) enjoying the fruit.

Many other birds were present including Purple-naped Sunbird/Spiderhunters, Grey-breasted Spiderhunters, Hume’s White-eye and many Bulbul species.

 White-bellied Erpornis

Birds that I have personally observed feeding on the Giant Mahang (Macaranga gigantea) fruit include:

  1. Emerald Dove (Chalcophaps indica)
  2. Blue-crowned Hanging Parrot (Loriculus galgulus)
  3. Crimson-winged Woodpecker (Picus puniceus observandus)
  4. Banded Woodpecker (Picus miniaceus malaccense)
  5. Checker-throated Woodpecker/Yellownaped (Chrysophlegma mentale humii)
  6. Sooty Barbet (Caloramphus hayii)
  7. Red-throated Barbet (Megalaima mystacophanos mystacophanos)
  8. Gold-whiskered Barbet (Megalaima chrysopogon laeta)
  9. Asian Koel (Eudynamys scolopaceus malayanus)
  10. Buff-vented Bulbul (Iole charlottae)
  11. Cream-vented Bulbul (Pycnonotus simplex simplex)
  12. Olive-winged Bulbul (Pycnonotus plumosus plumosus)
  13. Red-eyed Bulbul (Pycnonotus brunneus)
  14. Spectacled Bulbul (Pycnonotus erythropthalmus)
  15. Yellow-vented Bulbul (Pycnonotus goiavier gourdini)
  16. Scaly-Breasted Bulbul (Pycnonotus squamatus)
  17. Asian Fairy Bluebird (Irena puella malayensis)
  18. Greater Green Leafbird (Chloropsis sonnerati zosterops)
  19. Blue-winged Leafbird (Chloropsis cochinchinensis moluccensis)
  20. Green Iora (Aegithina viridissima)
  21. White-bellied Erpornis (Erpornis zantholeuca)
  22. Ashy Minivet (Pericrocotus divaricatus divaricatus)
  23. Oriental Magpie Robin (Copsychus saularis musicus)
  24. Orange-headed Thrush (Zoothera citrina)
  25. Asian Glossy Starling (Aplonis panayensis strigata)
  26. Lesser Cuckooshrike (Lalage fimbriata)
  27. Mugimaki Flycatcher (Ficedula mugimaki)
  28. Yellow-rumped Flycatcher (Ficedula zanthopygia)
  29. Asian Brown Flycatcher (Muscicapa dauurica)
  30. Green-backed Flycatcher (Narcissus Flycatcher, Ficedula narcissina elisae)
  31. Verditer Flycatcher (Eumyias thalassinus thalassoides)
  32. Hume’s White-eye (Zosterops auriventer)
  33. Grey-breasted Spiderhunter (Arachnothera modesta)
  34. Spectacled Spiderhunter (Arachnothera flavigaster)
  35. Yellow-eared Spiderhunter (Arachnothera chrysogenys chrysogenys)
  36. Purple-naped Sunbird (Hypogramma hypogrammicum)
  37. Ruby-cheeked Sunbird (Anthreptes singalensis interposita)
  38. Plain Sunbird (Anthreptes simplex)
  39. Orange-bellied Flowerpecker (Dicaeum trigonostigma)
  40. Crimson-breasted Flowerpecker (Prionochilus percussus)
  41. Other unidentified Sunbirds & Flowerpeckers
  42. Baya Weaver (Ploceus philippinus infortunatus)

 

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

Kledang-Sayong Forest Reserve, Ipoh, Perak, Malaysia

20th January 2022

Bar-winged Flycatcher-shrike

posted in: birds, Miscellaneous | 0

Saw 5 Bar-winged Flycatcher-shrikes (Hemipus picatus intermedius) in a family/social unit.

Post 1 (above) is of an adult female.

Post 2 of a juvenile/immature.

Post 3 – I suspect is also a juvenile/immature.

 

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

Location: 1,800m ASL, Cameron Highlands, Pahang, Malaysia

Habitat: Trail through primary jungle

Date: 24th September 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

26 Responses

  1. kris

    I just found a young dollarbird in the garden.. It seems to have left the nest too early and cannot fly yet. How am i to keep and feed it for a few days untill it can fly.???

  2. Iwan

    We have a small pond in our garden surrounded by trees and steep bedrock. The other day we saw a heron flying over and attempting to land – I guess to try to eat our small stock of fish. We managed to frighten it away before it landed, and have since installed trip wires around the pond in order to dissuade the bird. The amount of shelter around the pond means that a heron would have to land practically vertically. Does anyone know whether these birds have the agility to hover and land in this way, or do they always need a “glidepath” in order to land successfully?

  3. Khng Eu Meng

    Today, at the former Bidadari Cemetery, there was a buzz about a sighting of a Grey Nightjar (Caprimulgus jotaka). I heard some birders say this nightjar isn’t commonly seen in Singapore. After some hunting, we spotted it asleep on a tree branch, some 15 m above ground. This was rather interesting as my previous encounters with nightjars have been on either terra firma or on low branches.

    Is this perching so high up the tree normal or is it unusual? I have posted a photo of it on my Facebook Timeline: https://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=10151125012234135&set=a.108191464134.96538.617499134&type=1&theater

  4. Jess

    Bird Sanctuary At Former Bidadari Cementry

    1)Which is the best spot in Bidadari cemetery for bird watch?

    2)Where this bird usually resident at?

    3)What are some of the rare bird species that can be found at Bidadari?

    4)Where is the particular hot spot for the hornbills, eagles, kingfishers and some of the rare migratory bird?

    5)Which part of Bidadari are richest in it wildlife?

    6)Can you name me the 59 migratory bird species found?

  5. YC

    Why not search the website using the word ‘Bidadari’ to obtain the information you need. There should be sufficient info in past postings to satisfy you.

  6. Firdaus Razak

    Hai, I just want to ask did anybody had an experience bring bird from oversea via MasKargo? Did the bird will stress at high altitude?

  7. Chung Wah

    Hi, I am new to bird photography! Could anyone advise a good pair of binoculars to get for this hobby?

  8. Geam Liang

    I ‘acquired’ a female Blue-crowned Hanging Parrot 5 days ago – was in a public place when the bird flew overhead hit the wall and dropped right in front of me dazed. I picked it up, it appeared unhurt but could not sustain it’s flight. I have since constructed a fairly large ‘cage’ for it, about 4ft x 2fx x 2ft and placed it there last night. I temporarily placed her in a normal bird cage until I had completed the build.
    From what I have read up, it’s a fruit, seed and insect feeder and also nectar, flower buds. It’s doing as well as it can on bananas, papaya, jack-fruit (didn’t touch the grape) and seeds (black and white sunflower and other smaller ones). It loves to bathe so I’ve gotten it a tray and from what I read it’s important to keep things clean as it easily succumbs to infection.
    Does anyone else have any useful experience and sharing on it’s upkeep? I suspect this bird is an escapee – as far as I can read up, it’s not common, if at all, found in Georgetown, Penang where I am. I’m also not optimistic that it can survive if I were to set it free – assuming it can sustain it’s flight and not go crashing down and if there were dogs/cats around that would be the end of it.
    I can attach some pictures but not sure how to do this…
    thanks.

  9. Lee Chiu San

    The blue-crowned hanging parrot, even though very closely related to the lovebirds, is a nectar feeder. You would raise it the way you raise a lorikeet – which is a messy process. And because you are mixing batches of food for just one little bird, whereas I used to do it for about half a dozen pigeon-sized lorikeets each morning, I don’t know how you are going to get the portions down to manageable sizes. Anyway, here goes, with my recipe for feeding big lories. You can adjust the proportions down accordingly for your little bird.

    The staple diet would be a couple of slices of soft fruit (papaya, apple, grapes, even though I am surprised that you said the bird would not eat any) and a mixture of cooked rice sweetened with nectar mix.

    How to make nectar mix? Go to a pharmacy and get a can of food for invalids or infants. I use Complan, but I am sure any good baby formula would do. I usually make up enough to fill a beer mug, but there is no way you need that amount for a day’s feeding. If in doubt, make the mixture thinner, not thicker. Birds cannot digest baby formula that is too thick. If it is too thin, they simply have to consume more to get the required amount of energy. Then to this mug, add half a teaspoonful of rose syrup. Also stir in about a cup of cooked rice, well mashed up.

    In the case of your bird, I suggest that you pour this lot into an ice-cube tray, freeze the mixture, and defrost one cube to feed it each day.

    Now, you said that this bird eats sunflower seeds. This is most unusual for a blue-crowned hanging parrot. Are you sure that this is actually the species you have? Could it be possible that you have actually got a pet lovebird that escaped? There are so many different artificially-created breeds of lovebirds in so many colours that you might have been mistaken.

    If you actually have a lovebird, feeding is much simpler. Just go to the nearest pet shop, buy a packet of budgerigar or cockatiel seed of a reputable international brand, and offer it to the bird. You can supplement this with a couple of slices of fruit each day, and that will be all. Plus of course fresh water and a piece of cuttlefish bone to nibble on.

  10. Lee Chiu San

    About nectar feeding birds. I forgot to add that feeding nectar is messy, and it goes rancid very quickly in our tropical weather. Feeding containers have to be removed and thoroughly cleaned at the end of each day. The birds also splatter the mixture and wipe their beaks on perches and the bars of the cage. All my lories and lorikeets used to be housed in outdoor aviaries which were hosed down daily.

    If Geam Liang does not think the bird will survive if released, I really hope that it is a case of mistaken identity, and that you have a lovebird, rather than a blue-crowned hanging parrot. In our part of the world, all available lovebirds are domestically bred, take to captivity readily, and are easy to feed with commercially available seed mixtures. Yes, and being domestic pets, they would not survive if released.

  11. Geam Liang

    Thank you Chiu San for your inputs. Thus far, bananas and papayas work well. I’m not sure why it did not take to grapes – will try again. Am I supposed to peel it? I didn’t the last time, basically skewered a couple of grapes to a satay stick and positioned it as I did for the sliced and skinned papaya and peeled bananas.
    I have yet to try rice and certainly not nectar but will try out your concoction – have half a mind to go to a pet shop to see if they carry nectar for birds. The ice-cube freeze method is a good one, will try that. I might be mistaken on the sunflower seeds… not touched but it did eat the much smaller roundish, mixed colored seeds. Will remove the sunflower seeds.
    I’m sure it’s a female blue crowned hanging parrot.. it sleeps like a bat every night.

  12. Lee Chiu San

    When feeding local birds which are unfamiliar with imported fruits such as grapes, it helps to split the fruits to expose the edible parts. As to your remark that the bird sleeps hanging upside down like a bat, yes, that is the way blue-crowned hanging parrots sleep.

  13. Geam Liang

    Thanks… I need to think like a bird – yup. She has probably not seen a grape much less know that it’s edible, unless the previous owner has fed her with grapes… even then… Today she’s done pretty well making the most of the banana and all of the papaya plus quite a bit of seeds. Will try the baby food + mashed rise + rose syrup.
    Will regular honey do instead of rose syrup?
    Thanks.

  14. Lee Chiu San

    About making nectar to feed birds. Most aviculturalists do not use honey for two reasons: 1. It is expensive and does not seem to give any added benefits. 2. Honey is made by bees, and the composition varies wildly. Some honeys are also known to cause fungal infection in birds.

    If you do not want to buy a huge bottle of rose syrup just for one tiny bird, there are cheaper alternatives. The first is plain table sugar, though most don’t seem to like it very much.

    What many birds will accept quite readily as a sweetener is condensed milk – the type with sugar that coffee shop owners use.

    Many, many birds have a sweet tooth (or should I say sweet beak?) Besides the usual suspects of lories, lorikeets, sunbirds and hummingbirds, for whom it is an essential part of the diet, nectar mixture is readily consumed by mynahs, leafbirds, fairy bluebirds, barbets, doves, parrots of all kinds, and a whole host of other species.

  15. Geam Liang

    I tried the condensed mild, placed in in a small bottle cap.. only the ants showed interest. Am I supposed to dilute it? I didn’t =( I took you advice and refrained from honey. Have yet to find Rose Syrup from the shelves of TESCO… will try to mix the baby food + mashed rise + rose syrup/sugar syrup this week…

  16. David Thackray

    Can anyone help me identify a bird I saw in Singapore last week. Size of a smakll dove or thrush. Dark metallic back. Grey breast with red throat, chest.

  17. Emily Koh

    Lately I bought a bird feeder which I fill with 4parts water n 1 part white sugar. Sunbirds come regularly to drink and they are really lovely to watch. May I know if it is bad for them to feed on this? Previously they would sometimes pierce and drink from my potted flowers

  18. Emily Koh

    Lately I bought a bird feeder which I fill with 4parts water n 1 part white sugar. Sunbirds come regularly to drink and they are really lovely to watch. May I know if it is bad for them to feed on this? Previously they would sometimes pierce and drink from my potted flowers.

  19. Mahadevi Bhuti

    One of best souce for the bird watcher’s enjoying knowledge about ornithology

  20. Martin Nyffeler (PhD)

    Dear Sir / Dear Madame,

    I am a Senior Lecturer in Zoology at a University in Switzerland and I urgently need to get in touch with photographer Chan Yoke Meng, who takes beautiful photographs of birds near Singapore. Would you please mail me the email address of this photographer!

    Thanks,
    Martin

  21. Wee Ming

    Hello Besgroup,

    Trust this email finds you well. We chance upon your photograph on your website and found the amazing image of the Laced Woodpecker and durians. We would like to explore the possibility of getting permission to use them for a new Bird Park in Singapore.

    Spacelogic is a company based in Singapore and we have been contracted by Mandai Park Development to carry out design and build works relating to the exhibition interpretive displays in this new Bird Park.

    Some background of the new Mandai Bird Park project; it will build upon the legacy of the Jurong Bird Park – https://www.wrs.com.sg/en/jurong-bird-park.html by retaining and building upon a world-reference bird collection and creating a place of colour and joy for all visitors. The new Bird Park will have a world-reference ornithological collection displayed in a highly immersive way with large walk-through habitats. To enhance visitors’ experience with storyline and narrative of the bird park, transition spaces are added to display exhibits that provide a varied type of fun, intuitive, interactive and educational experiences for all visitors. One of the habitats features the Laced Woodpecker on a flora panel It is in this flora panel that we are seeking your permission to feature the Laced Woodpecker. We are looking to use the first image on the link here.
    Link can be found here: https://besgroup.org/2012/06/28/laced-woodpecker-and-durians/

    We would like to ask if this is something that we can explore further and if yes, how can we go about with putting through a formal permission request. Thank you so much for considering our request and we look forward to hearing from you.

    Warmest Regards,
    Wee Ming
    SPACElogic Pte Ltd

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