White-throated Kingfisher – juvenile and calls

posted in: birds, Kingfishers, Vocalisation | 0

Spotted this juvenile White-throated Kingfisher (Halcyon smyrnensis perpulchra) that was being fed by an adult in the neighbourhood. Note the barred breast in the juvenile (above) and darker bill (below: face comparison with an adult at top; different lighting).

The calls the juvenile was making are available here: https://www.xeno-canto.org/562973

They were the usual juvenile food-begging calls and were fast, persistent and loud. Juvenile calls were 0.05 seconds long, given at 9 per second and of low frequency (below: sonogram and waveform).

 

Amar-Singh HSS (Dato’ Dr)

Ipoh, Perak, Malaysia

 

Location: Ipoh, Perak, Malaysia

Habitat: Urban environment

Date: 28th May 2020

Equipment: Equipment: Nikon D500 SLR with Nikon AF-S 105mm f/2.8G VR IF-ED

 

Jungle/Javan Myna – family group

posted in: birds, Morphology-Develop. | 0

A composite of the four mynas.

A family of 4 Jungle/Javan Mynas landed on a pole just near to my car; 2 adults with 2 juveniles. The image above is a composite of 4 images – as the birds were quite close I had to take 4 images to get each of them in focus and then merge them.

A juvenile myna.

The image above is of a juvenile. Note the juvenile have light blue or off-white iris compared to the adult yellow iris. In addition, the juveniles have browner plumage cf the adults. These juveniles were self-feeding.

An adult myna.

An adult myna.

I must say that differentiating Jungle Mynas (Acridotheres fuscus torquatus) from Javan Mynas (Acridotheres javanicus) is not easy and welcome opinions of the ID. I initially thought they were Jungle Mynas – far more common in my area and breeding locally. But the Javan Mynas have made inroads in recent years and I expect to see them breeding locally. I am inclined to think these are Javan Mynas as the blue-black colour of the base of the bill (seen in the Jungle Mynas) is not clear/prominent and the adult plumage more slaty-grey than the browner Jungle Mynas. Not good to have them breeding locally.

 

Amar-Singh HSS (Dato’ Dr)

Ipoh, Perak, Malaysia

 

Location: Ipoh, Perak, Malaysia

Habitat: Open fields limestone hills

Date: 28th December 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

 

Why Singapore birders love the Oriental Dwarf Kingfisher (Ceyx erithaca) at Bishan-Ang Mo Kio Park

posted in: bird, Ceyx erithaca | 0

The photo by Tony Chua and videos by Jeremiah Loei showcase the beauty and cuteness of this particular Oriental Dwarf Kingfisher (Ceyx erithaca) a.k.a. Black-backed Kingfisher a.k.a. Three-toed Kingfisher. CY Tan’s photos captured the bird’s flight maneuvers.

Photo 1 credit to Tony Chua. The beautiful Ceyx erithaca that captivated birders in Singapore in November 2021.
Photo 2 by CY Tan. Oriental Dwarf Kingfisher with pond-skater in beak.
Photo 3 by CY Tan. The Oriental Dwarf Kingfisher engaged in landing approach.
Photo 4 by CY Tan. Oriental Dwarf Kingfisher touches down on lotus leaf.

Video 1 by Jeremiah Loei.  The cuteness overload is captured in this video.

Video 2 by Jeremiah Loei.  The kingfisher is only 14 cm long and light in weight.  It is able to stand on a withered lotus leaf.

Video 3 by Jeremiah Loei. The kingfisher allows photographers to approach it.

Video 4 by Jeremiah Loei.

Video 5 by Jeremiah Loei.  A good queueing system installed by NParks for the benefit of young and veteran birders.

Birders have shown that consideration for other birders gives everyone a fair chance to bag beautiful photos and videos of that prized bird.  The early birders are able to point out to later birders  the locations to get the best angles and lightings for the perfect shot. The best part of the system is that everyone can have second and third chances. Birders can perhaps self-organize and observe this queueing system whenever crowding is expected in all future birding pursuits.

This post is a cooperative effort between Birds, Insects N Creatures Of Asia and BESG to bring the study of birds and their behaviour through photography and videography to a wider audience.

Rufous Piculet – part of bird wave

posted in: birds, Feeding strategy | 0

Came across a single adult male Rufous Piculet (Sasia abnormis abnormis) that was part of a lowland mixed foraging party (bird wave).

The other birds in the mixed foraging party were:

Chestnut-breasted Malkoha (Phaenicophaeus curvirostris) – two

Olive-winged Bulbul (Pycnonotus plumosu) – four

Red-eyed Bulbul (Pycnonotus brunneus) – two

Crimson-breasted Flowerpecker (Prionochilus percussus) – a pair and an immature

Purple-naped Sunbird (Hypogramma hypogrammicum) – a pair

Little Spiderhunter (Arachnothera longirostra) – one

And others not identified (bulbuls, etc)

Note the lemon-yellow lower mandible contrasting with the black upper mandible, the red iris (adult), purple orbital ring and frontal yellow seen in males. The feet are orange and the under parts and rump are orange-chestnut. The tail is black, very short and not well seen.

 

Amar-Singh HSS (Dato’ Dr)

Ipoh, Perak, Malaysia

 

Location: Ipoh, Perak, Malaysia

Habitat: Broken primary forest with secondary growth

Date: 15th October 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

 

Thick-billed Flowerpecker 

posted in: birds, Feeding-plants | 0

Saw a few (2 or 3) Thick-billed Flowerpeckers (Dicaeum agile modestum) feeding on the fruit of the Ficus religiosa (Sacred Fig). The figs fruit are 1-1.5 cm in diameter and the birds have to pull pieces off to feed. This is a new fruit source.

In the past I have seen between 8 to 12 Thick-billed Flowerpeckers feeding together at a fruiting Ficus benjamina – a mixture of adults and immature birds.

 

Amar-Singh HSS (Dato’ Dr)

Ipoh, Perak, Malaysia

 

Location: Ipoh, Perak, Malaysia

Habitat: Fringe of primary forest

Date: 26th November 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

 

Chinese Pond-heron – rare visitor

posted in: birds, Miscellaneous | 0

Chinese Pond-heron (Ardeola bacchus) are described as ‘scarce’ in Japan (Mark Brazil. Birds of Japan. Helm Field Guides 2018) but known to breed occasionally in the southern islands (Handbook of the Birds of the World Alive, 2019). We saw a single bird in early breeding plumage in the Nemuro Peninsula, East Hokkaidō and this is considered rare.

 

Amar-Singh HSS (Dato’ Dr)

Ipoh, Perak, Malaysia

 

Location: Nemuro Peninsula, East Hokkaidō, Japan

Date: 6th June 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

Oriental Dwarf Kingfisher ( Ceyx erithaca) sent bird photographers into shock and loss

posted in: bird, Ceyx erythaca | 0

The Oriental Dwarf Kingfisher (Ceyx erithaca) is a small kingfisher about 14 cm long. The underparts are bright yellow, a dark blue spot can be seen on its forehead and discernible behind each ear covert as well.  A bright lilac line runs down the centre of its rump and tail coverts. The wings and scapulars are black, the beak is a bright reddish colour. Its small size poses a challenge to  photographers: to notice its presence and then to photograph it.  This little bird is also known as the Black-backed Kingfisher or Three-toed Kingfisher. The little kingfisher is not resident in Singapore but is a vagrant that makes its presence felt between October and March.

Its miniature size and beautiful colours makes this bird very adorable and appealing to photographers. Isolated individuals have been spotted in Singapore at various times.  One was spotted in Gardens by the Bay in October 2018. Another one was photographed at Hindhede Nature Park in October 2021.  This little one sighted in Bishan-Ang Mo Kio Park has induced many photographers’ heart to flutter. The bird is often seen diving in the water bodies in the park and allowing photographers to approach it up close.

Parks personnel were quick to sense the enthusiasm of photographers and quickly set up the much appreciated queueing system around the Rock area, the Lotus pond and the bridge. The queue was mostly 70 people long with a wait time of 1 hour for a 10 minute photography opportunity. Groups of 10 people were allowed into the designated photo hot-spot.   It is clear that all the photographers had the same motivation to turn up at the park and cooperation, thoughtfulness and consideration for everyone’s wellbeing is of primary importance.  As usual, most photographers are civil in behaviour and thought.  A few entitled photographers were there and did cause some unhappiness.  However, the NParks staff are seasoned in crowd management and compassionate towards the birders’ attempts to catch sight of their new love interest.  Many of the NParks staff started work at dawn and only called it a day after dusk.  Many photographers there have expressed their appreciation for the hardwork and tactfulness of the NParks staff and hope that they did get their meal and toilet breaks while going about their work. Perhaps, birders can queue up at all birding hot-spots in the future?

13 November 2021 started as a very promising and exhilarating day for bird photographers.  However, many were left in shock and disbelief after mid-day.  The little sweetheart dived but did not surface to enthrall the bird photographers. It was also not seen in the park again.  Many believe that the tiny bird was eaten by snakeheads (Channa sp.).  Tributes starting appearing on Facebook. Read this post by Daryl Tan who captured the highs and lows photographers experienced on 13 November 2021.

 

Photo 1 by Jeremiah Loei.

 

Photo 2 by Jeremiah Loei.

 

Photo 3 by Jeremiah Loei. The colours of the bird stand out in this photo.

 

Photo 4 by Gordon Koh. The Oriental Dwarf Kingfisher ate this.

 

Photo 5 by Sangmen Wong. Bishan-Ang Mo Kio Park. 13 October 2021. The photo illustrates the size of the mature Oriental Dwarf Kingfisher.

 

Photo 6 by Alex Han.

 

Photo 7. Article published by Zaobao 14 November 2021 about the big fever caused by a tiny bird.

 

Photo 8 by James Gan.

 

James Gan wrote a beautiful tribute to this much-loved kingfisher.

“The Legendary Kingfisher!”
Tribute to the brave little king!
R.I.P.
13th Nov 2021
You will always be an unforgettable legend,
arrived in style, vanished in shock.
The diligent dwarf, with the speed of lightning.
The kinky king, with exotic feathers, full arrays thru your back.
Some called you three-toed or black-backed,
Painted in black, blue, orange, purple, yellow with brush of pink on the head,
It was hard to miss you in action.
Surrounded by young and old, kind and friendly,
Everyone queued to chronicle you for posterity.
Of course ill mannered pests inclusive worshipped you,
Forever counting your rainbow coloured feathers,
Making you less wholesome and complete.
All left Bishan-Ang Mo Kio Park with a heavy heart,
Some just arrived hoping for a miracle,
But God’s lovely creation is gone…

 

This post is a cooperative effort between Birds, Insects N Creatures Of Asia and BESG to bring the study of birds and their behaviour through photography and videography to a wider audience.

References:

  1. A Field Guide to the Birds of South-East Asia by Ben King, Martin Woodcock and E.C. Dickinson © 1975
  2. https://www.nparks.gov.sg/nparksbuzz/issue-40-vol-1-2019/conservation/meet-the-%E2%80%9Ckings%E2%80%9D-of-singapore%E2%80%99s-skie

CWSS Green Plan Garden of the Year Award 2021

BESGroup congratulates Commonwealth Secondary School (CWSS) for winning the much coveted Garden of the Year Award 2021 for Educational Institutions and Organisations. The Community in Bloom (CIB) Awards recognise gardening efforts and encourage community gardeners to enjoy gardening and to learn and improve. The school board has been supportive of Jacob Tan Guanrui’s exemplary leadership in this endeavour. In time, Jacob will also be dealing with nature attracted to this lush, green environment in a school setting. This is an excellent example of how our schools can bring nature to the students under their care.

This post features the photographs showcasing the lush school environment and the students’ enthusiasm in looking after the vegetable garden.  Jacob also explains in his own words how the school was judged for this award. CWSS is a model for other schools to emulate in introducing nature to students.

 

Photo 1. My school is presented with the Diamond Award after achieving three Platinum banding in 2016, 2018, and 2021 consecutively, at the NParks Community in Bloom Awards 2021. Click HERE for the full result dossier and HERE for a summary video.

 

Photo 2. We are also recognised with the Garden of the Year Award, for being a school in an exceptional garden with horticultural and design excellence, a high level of community engagement, as well as outstanding educational and outreach quality. These green spaces include the Gardens by the Corridor, The Stream, Indoor Garden, The Wetland, and Rainforest.

 

Photo 3.

 

Photo 4.

 

Photo 5.

 

Photo 6.

 

Photo 7.

 

Photo 8. The judging criteria include:
1) Garden Quality
2) Community Engagement & Inclusiveness
3) Biodiversity & Sustainability Efforts
With the announcement of our school’s Green Plan in April this year, our school started our Indoor Farm to boost our capacity in local food production, where students learn about issues of food security while growing vegetables to be served in our canteen.

 

Photo 9.

 

Photo 10.

 

Photo 11.

 

Photo 12.

 

Photo 13.

 

Photo 14.

 

Check out our CWSS Climate Action microsite HERE.

In support of the nationwide One Million Trees movement, students working in our Plant Nursery are currently taking care of over 600 individual saplings of forest tree species with conservation status that includes those which are common, vulnerable, endangered, critically endangered, locally extinct, and recently rediscovered. Seeds were collected by NParks staff from nature reserves and given to our students to germinate and propagate in our nursery, which would eventually be planted around our campus and eventually contribute to tree planting along our Nature Ways, Nature Parks and Nature Reserve, as part of the NParks Forest Restoration Action Plan.

 

Photo 15.

 

Photo 16.

 

Photo 17.

 

Photo 18.

 

The CWSS Green Plan is a living plan that will evolve as we continue to find ways to make sustainability a key theme on our Campus, infusing into our Curriculum, building a school Culture, and connecting with the Community beyond our school. 
We aim to nurture stewards of the environment who are empowered to make a positive difference in our schools, homes, and community for a sustainable Singapore.
Let us look forward to seeing this vision come true in many other schools in Singapore as well!

 

Let us look forward to seeing this vision come true in many other schools in Singapore as well!
Jacob Tan
Senior Teacher (Biology), Teacher IC (Eco Club)Commonwealth Secondary School  698 West Coast Road, S(608784) Tel +65 65606866 (ext. 136)  Fax +65 65645204  Website http://www.commonwealthsec.moe.edu.sg • Instagram #cwssbiodiversity • http://tinyurl.com/cwssbiodiversity

 

Yellow-bellied Prinia

posted in: birds, Morphology-Develop., Vocalisation | 0

Adult male Yellow Prinia (Prinia flaviventris rafflesi) in breeding plumage (below).

The adult female partner (below). Note the male face has more black and female retains the white supercilium.

Note again the breeding plumage changes in the males – an indistinct, brownish (or buff) upper breast (at times lower neck band) – seen better in 2nd half of the video. In some birds this extends lower down and is almost confluent with the yellow belly; but always very light.

Male Yellow Prinia in breeding plumage in song (above).

A hand held video of the male singing is here: https://youtu.be/1atFkfr-4Tw

 

Amar-Singh HSS (Dato’ Dr)

Ipoh, Perak, Malaysia

 

Location: Ipoh, Perak, Malaysia

Habitat: Ex-mining pools & fruit farming next to limestone outcroppings

Date: 8th February 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

 

Chestnut-headed Bee-eater – prey for juveniles

posted in: birds, Feeding-invertebrates | 0

Updated Disclosure on Nest Observation:

I watched 3 nests of Chestnut-headed Bee-eater (Merops leschenaulti leschenaultia) in close proximity to each other. I watched over two occasions – 15th and 18th April 2018 for 30 and 45 minutes respectively. On the first occasion I focused on social and nesting behaviour. On the second occasion I stayed 15-20 meters away at the bird’s ‘staging area’ where they stop momentarily when bringing prey to young. I monitored the bird’s distress and reluctance to feed to minimise any disruption. I avoided discovery by human passer-by’s by also focusing on other birds and the environment. 

Update on Prey Brought to Young

There is limited information on prey taken by Chestnut-headed Bee-eaters (HBW 2019). Here I am documenting prey brought to young and may not reflect the typical adult diet. It is also possible that prey size and type change as the juveniles grow. All the prey brought to juveniles were insects. Although I enjoy insects, the identification of species is not easy. I have searched references and offer possible ID when I am sure but am happy if anyone has better identification for these insect prey. I was not able to observe all the prey brought to the three nests as some birds used different routes to get to the nesting holes. I imaged about 50-60% of the prey brought during the time of my observation (75 minutes over two days). I missed some of the smaller prey brought to the nests. However, these observations offer some idea of feeding behaviour of these birds. Prey was killed before offering to young, often by branch or electrical wire swiping. Prey was fed to young with wings still intact.

Composite of Chestnut-headed Bee-eaters with dragonflies.

Dragonfly prey (12 feeding episodes observed)

White-barred Duskhawk (Tholymis tillarga), male – 3

Possible Scarlet Pygmy (Nannophya pygmaea), female – 2

Libellulidae family dragonflies (called skimmers – one with a red abdomen, another with brown wings) – 2

Unidentified Dragonflies (3 species) – 4

Composite of Chestnut-headed Bee-eaters with moths and butterflies.

Moth and Butterfly Prey (8 feeding episodes observed)

Hummingbird Hawk-Moth (Macroglossum sp.) – 3

Unidentified Brown Moth – 3

Full Stop Swift (Caltoris cormasa, a butterfly) – 1

Unidentified small Butterfly – 1

Chestnut-headed Bee-eater with a White-barred Duskhawk male dragonfly (Tholymis tillarga)

Other Prey (3 feeding episodes observed)

House Fly – 1

Wasps – 2

Chestnnut-headed Bee-eater with a Hummingbird Hawk-Moth (Macroglossumsp.)

I was surprised that these birds can catch the extremely fast Hummingbird Hawk-Moths.

 

Amar-Singh HSS (Dato’ Dr)

Ipoh, Perak, Malaysia

 

Location: Ipoh, Perak, Malaysia

Habitat: Semi-Urban environment

Date: 18th April 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

 

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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