An unofficial national bird icon, the Crimson Sunbird is commonly seen among nectar-producing plants.
SUNGEI BULOH WETLANDS RESERVE 30TH ANNIVERSARY
Time to celebrate 30 years of community stewardship. It also marks the opening of the reconstructed Cashin House – a western extension of the Lim Chu Kang Nature Park
A 4th generation chick. Hampstead wetlands has been a regular nesting site for the Buffy Fish Owls. Usually one chick is produced at any one time. From a pure white initial stage to shades of brown with each passing day, the chick is thriving with regular supply of catfish, eels, frogs and rodents.
Grey-headed Fish Eagle hunting at Hampstead Wetlands. Unfortunately, there is barely any fish seen.
White-winged Terns fishing at Kallang River. The action was fast and furious and it was difficult for my camera to keep tracking the bird as it would change direction just before diving.
A pair of Collared Kingfishers provided the needed distraction during the lull periods.
Crested Goshawk on the prowl. Female probably sick of eating chicks of wild jungle Fowls that she decided to hunt on its own. Caught a Changeable Lizard. In the mean time, both will be involved in nest building.
BEFORE THE DAWN BREAKS
Buffy already on the prowl
Season for the Crested Goshawks. The thriving wild chicken population is at risk. Time to get amorous again. Front and back views of them mating. Nesting material was also collected. Hopefully we see more babies soon. Paris Ris Park.
Love at Paradise
Buffy caught a fish! It ate up the head and left it unattended on a branch some distance away (about 20m). Suddenly it took off from its regular perch to grab the fish and into the woods. It later returned (with a much consumed fish) to share it with its mate. The female ate it and later took a drink by the water edge.
Buffy (female) drinks water during dust. Tried so, so many times to document this and finally succeeded; in very low light conditions. After a full day of baby sitting, the female flies out for a few moments to communicate with the male and to stretch and after that for a well deserved sip of water.
The arrival of the Common King marks the commencement of the migratory season. Its favourite meal are the tiny guppies.
Fishing at the Quarry. Children’s Day is meant for some play. Some teens decided to go fishing and seem quite expert at their venture. The Gray-headed Fish Eagle obliged.
Darting in and Out. The Oriental Darter catches fish at the Singapore Quarry. Seems like this snakebird is a novice and only managed the smaller fishes. During the initial periods, larger Tilapias were caught but the fishes were getting smarter when they see the Darter.
A flight out and back to relieve itself from the long hours of sitting on the eggs. Hampstead/ Baker St
Buffy brought back fish for its mate but not before eating part of it first.
Left: Male savouring catfish first. Right top: fish was dumped in nest, female flew out to feast; probably not to dirty its nest which contains the eggs. Bottom right: Male just flew in to its favourite perch
Changeable Lizard, an introduced species that is thriving in our parks. The male displays its mating colours
Green Iguanas on the rise in Singapore. These exotics are popular as pets (although illegal) but once their full size is realised, they are often abandoned. This poses danger to our fragile ecosystem. Jurong EcoGarden
Only tiger left in Singapore – Tiger Shrike. Common Iora. JEG
Smooth-clawed Otters running amok in freshwater pond. All the big fishes had no chance. JEG
Unearthly hours at Baker Street. The use of a lens with an aperture 1.8 makes a world of difference in low light photography. This serves well as the Buffy Fish Owl is nocturnal.
Saw a pair of Rufous Woodpeckers foraging but only managed to photograph one. Jurong EcoGarden.
White-throated Kingfisher fishes by catching with its beak and does not plunge into water. Its catch is usually small fishes and to satisfy its appetite, it does that a number of times – much to the delight of photographers. Jurong Eco-Garden
Early morning rendezvous with Buffy. The white markings on its forehead tells its gender – male. Hampstead Wetlands
At SQ. Crimson Sunbird and Changeable Hawk
White-headed Munia feeding on the seeds of long grass (Faber Heights)
At Singapore Q. Spear fishing by Stork-billed Kf. Painted Jezebel and GHFE feasting on catfish
Sterculia sp. fruiting high up at the Bukit Timah Nature Reserve. Its fruits are eaten by birds and mammals.
Orange-bellied Flowerpecker feeding on the fruits of the Singapore Rhododendron. It is found in many countries in Asia. [Singapore Quarry]
The Straw-headed Bulbul is a much poached songbird in the region. Famous for its melodious calls, it is not unexpected that it is much prized in the wildlife trade. World-endangered, its dwindling numbers are a cause of concern. However, it manages to thrive on the mainland as well as on Pulau Ubin. Hindhede Nature Park
The Common Flameback. Although not as common as the name suggests (probably common when it was first discovered and named), this wood pecker is often seen when it is on hunting mode. Bukit Timah Nature Reserve.
ONCE IN A BLUE MOON – when the moon is the brightest and nearest to Earth. It’s called the Blue Moon as water droplets or volcanic ash in the air may cast a blue effect. The Super Moon, although not necessary blue, is surrounded by clear blue skies. Right, the night be4.
Just as dawn approaches, hunger is a great motivator to dive for breakfast. The sunlight was still shrouded by the clouds. And dive ,the Grey-headed Fish Eagle did. Surprising, like the otter, it has a liking for fish head.
ISO 6400 t= 1/1600 600mm f4
The Buffy Fish Owl is thriving very well here. So far I noted four families nesting/ nested – at Jurong Lake Gardens, Pine Grove Park Connector, SBWR and Hampstead Wetlands Park. This augurs very well with the countries’ conservation efforts at habitat restoration. The following images were taken at 7 am at Hampstead Wetlands.
Scaly-breasted Munia building nest at JLG
Juvenile Buffy Fish Owl just out of the nest and about to fledge. Parents keeping a watchful eye especially against the main harassers – the crows. (Sungei Buloh Wetlands Reserve)
Juvenile is lighter coloured
White-bellied Sea Eagle with its catch for breakfast, Striated Heron on a flypast, Common Koel (male) with its distinctive calls (Faber Heights)
More than a successful catch. Gray-headed Fish Eagle displayed its sharp talons and managed to pierce two fishes at one go. Pandan River (180823). At times the bird -no show. Sometimes show up but no dive; futile wait. At times do many dives but photographer not there or already given up.
Straited Heron, White-headed Munia and Laced Woodpecker (Ulu Pandan River).
Fantail raised a Cuckoo chick – a 2nd brood parasitism. (Jurong Lake Garden)
More at JLG
Anole displaying eye-catching colours to attract partners and Slaty breasted Crake
Going Cuckoo at Jurong Lake Gardens
Rusty-breasted Cuckoo being fed by “parents” the Pied Fantails. The irony of Parasitic feeding
Flypast at Pandan River
While waiting for the arrival or diving moment of the GHFE, some distractions were necessary as the latter may take hours to dive or may not even appear.
The distraction comprises of the Gray Heron, Purple Heron and Racket-tailed Drongo
Barn Swallow, Pied Imperial Pigeon, White -bellied Sea Eagle
Rainbow Lorikeets at Alexandra Village
Originally from Australia, Rainbow Lorikeets are flourishing here, thanks to the abundant fruits from the fruit trees planted in the many parks and gardens. Friendly and sociable, they make great pets but are often released once the owners get tired of them.
Buffy Fish Owl at Pine Grove
Purple Heron at Pandan River
What a delight to watch the Purple Heron’s slow graceful flight, traversing the course of the Pandan River. Suntanning- it catches the rays of the morning light by panning out its wings.
Grey-headed Fish Eagles at Pandan River
Today three GHFE (Bobo, Momo & Dodo?) arrived in the early morning and photographers lined up behind the railings and waited for the eagles to dive. Bobo caught a large fish but had difficulty carrying and dropped it on the grass at the river edge. The parents had a Catfish and a Cichlid. One of the visiting otters caught a Cichlid.
GHFE caught a pink variegated Catfish
Blue-eared Kf at Jurong Eco-garden (7th July 2023)
The Blue-eared Kf at the Jurong Eco-garden did appear, rather unpredictable at times and often towards fading light. I had to forgo flight shots and I waited at the nearest possible branch and it obliged.
Mangoes at Alexandra Village (6th July 2023)
Ripening Mangoes at Alexandra Road attracted parrots, lorikeets and parakeets. Other birds like the glossy Starlings, Yellow-vented Bulbuls, Lineated Barbets joined in the feast.
Above: Rainbow Lorikeet and Hanging Parrot (female) and Sunbird
Blue-crown Hanging Parrot, Yellow -vented Bulbul, Common Myna
Tanimbar Corella, Black-naped Oriole, Lineated Barbet
Red-breasted Parakeet and Glossy Starling were also attracted by the scent of the ripened mangoes
Jurong Eco Garden
Iguana (escapee or released), Blue-eared Kingfisher, Black-naped Oriole. Visits by the Blue-eared Kf occurred sporadically and often during the hours of dust. In between I had to be contended with an Iguana and the sudden flights of the Black-naped Oriole.
Jurong Lake Gardens
Coppersmith Barbet bringing in copious amounts of food for its chick (JLG)
Collared Kf with cricket, lizard and caterpillar (JLG)
Collared Kf, FIM (Food in mouth) & BIF (Bird in flight). Cicada and caterpillar
Chek Jawa revisited
Lontong is only available on Sunday and I would not want to miss it. The Rhinocerous rock stands vigil, overlooking the jetty. The boardwalk to Chek Jawa to the mudflats will only open at 9am; way past the low tides necessary to see its netizens (only on permitted dates). Chek Jawa is a place where six ecosystems are in proximity and collectively makes CJ unique.
Memecylon edule (Coastal Hill Forest), Sea pandanas, Xemenia americana (both from Mangrove forest)
Smooth-clawed Otter, Forest Monitor (Rocky Shore), Atap fruits (Mangrove forest)
The Brahminy Strikes
Brahminy Kites often scavenge for carrion or dead fish (removing them before they decay and pollute the waters). Western Catchment
BWK at Garden by the Bay
It is amazing how many rodents were caught on a daily basis. Certainly need the Black-winged Kite to control its population. Those who use rat poison to eradicate the rodents, think again. It will also kill the birds. Garden by the Bay
Pin-tailed Whydah in courtship rituals at Farmway, Pasir Ris
Courtship into sunset. The flirtatious male chased the females whenever they are within sight.
26 May – This morning, grey skies and a downpour – a worst case scenario for documenting the feeding of the Black-winged Kite chicks. However, it did not dampen my spirits. Stayed on until the rain stopped. The parents returned with a small bird (see the legs sticking out on the abdomen) and a rodent.
The Strike – another unsuccessful dive by the Gray-headed Fish Eagle
Despite having fledged, the juvenile Pacific Swallow will take the easy way out. It will call out its parents to demand being fed. It perches to remain visible and waits patiently for Deliveroo service.
The corpse flower blooms again. This time, the Amorphophallus paenoiifolius was not affected by rain. People had complained of the stench on day 1. On the 3rd day there was none; not a whiff of the odour.
Coppersmith Barbets at Hampstead Gardens – its chick is growing fast (helped by the numerous offerings of fruits).
Laced Woodpeckers at Labrador Nature Park. One chick already fledged, the other, anytime soon. Female and male LWPs. Conserving the mangroves at Labrador is paying dividends.
More at Labrador Nature Park – Peacock (resident), Chinese Pond Heron (changing to breeding plumage) and Mangrove Whistler (rare migrant).
With nest-hole completed, so one can expect to see juniors soon. (DFNP)
Down by the Pandan River. Gray-headed Fish Eagle on a successful dive, Smooth-clawed Otter feeding and Purple Heron about to land.
It has been quite a while to touch base with the Banded Flying Snake or Twin-barred Tree Snake – elusive until today. The Waggler’s Pit Viper remained comfortable at its resting site despite the numerous flashes from one particular photographer. As usual the Red-crowned Barbet was chilling, now that the nest hole was completed. (DFNP)
Flycatchers at Dairy Farm NP – Green-backed FC and Blue and White FC
Common Flame-back preparing for nesting abode. Hampstead Gardens
White-bellied Sea Eagle at Eagle Point. A brood of two chicks at the usual nest near the entrance- an indication of a busy time for the parents. Bottom right: WBSE caught a small fish. SBWR
Red-crowned Barbet excavating tree hole for a nest (Dairy Farm Nature Park)
It was past 4 days documenting this bloom and was quite wilted. A rare bloom of the Amorphophallus paenoiifolius at the Healing Garden of the Botanical Gardens, also known as corpse flower, I did not detect any scent even as I put my nose next to it.
Blue-tailed Bee-eater at Seletar Cresent.
Smooth-clawed otters devouring a huge Koi at Quarry. Another one bites the dust. 24 Feb 2023