Saturday, November 9, 2013

York Road 20Oct13

From Danny

Went on my Sunday morning walk around York Road/Royal Road area, parked my car at the back gate of Eton Hall. Along York Road about 20 meters from Alexandra Road entrance, there was a large Banyan Tree (behind Lamp Post 7).The tree when fruiting typically attracts pigeons and starlings to feast on the fruits. This morning not fruiting but flowers attract insects and birds including migrants like warblers. I spent almost an hour trying to take pictures of the fast EC Warblers which at times flew down low due to the low hanging branches typical of Banyan Tree. They have intervals flying in like bird wave every 15 to 20 min intervals. Each wave consists of AB Flycatchers, Yellow-rumped FC, APFC, sunbirds, Oriental White-eyes and 3 species of warblers .

Refer to pics below, could see the differences between Eastern Crowned and Yellow-browed Warblers. The Yellow browed warbler has worn plumages, thin wing bars, thin pale fringes on tertials but lower mandible was orangey yellow with dark tip unlike the plain, clean, yellowish lower mandible of the EC warbler. The call heard was different from the thrills of the arctic warblers, more musical but no recording, as too busy trying to take pics. Proportionally the EC has longer tail.

Yellow-browed Warbler

Eastern Crowned Warbler

Tuas 18Oct13

From GC

23 Chinese Sparrowhawks were seen on migration this morning.

There was a flock of 10 'following' a bunch of swifts. Indeed, they looks like swifts to the naked eye as they were flying higher than the swifts, making them appear the same size!. Through binoculars, then the difference was noted.

Another flock of 10 was spotted 'by chance' when checking out the resident juvenile Brahminy Kite. They were high up, specks to the naked eye.

Thousands of Chinese Sparrowhawks move through Malaysia, but few are recorded on migration in Singapore. Maybe they fly so high, nobody notices them passing through Singapore into Indonesia. More observations would be needed to confirm this.

There were also 7 Jap Sparrowhawks and 1 Osprey.

For the residents, there was an adult WBSE which caught a huge fish, a juv WBSE, 1 Black-winged Kite (ad) and 2 ad + 2 juv Brahminy Kites.

Satay by the Bay 13Oct13

From Danny
Last Sunday, 13 Oct at Satay by the Bay, two OHBs.

For photography, I think Satay by the Bay is a good location, as the trees are short and the birds get to be at eye level or lower, even my aim & shoot Canon could get some reasonable shots. Happy the Lesser Whistling-ducks breeding was successful, though brood only 5 chicks.

Male Brown-throated Sunbird

Tuas 12Oct13

From KH

Con, Danny and I went to Tuas to recce for wader and raptor access points. However, there were only 1 Malaysian Plover and a few Common Sandpipers at the sand bank. Raptor-wise we only got the residents.

After lunch, Danny and I went to Sungei Buloh, but there were only the usual waders.

Pasir Ris Park 7Oct13

From Con

I think I finally have got the Eastern Crowned Warbler.

I went to PRP to look for the Buffy Fish Owl and also try for Eastern Crowned Warbler, as I thought it should be a good habitat for him, and avoid the crowds at Bida and the very tall trees at Bida.

It was a very murky morning, I walked around the board walk and the Buffy was no where to be seen. Amazingly about 5 photographers had a woodpecker cornered in a hole, I thought everyone would be at Bida. I did see a warbler in a fairly low mangrove type tree, but some grannies came by talking loudly so no luck. I hung around there for awhile but couldn’t find any more warblers.

Then I walked around the tall trees where the Wood Owl often is, but no Woodie either, and amazingly no bird activity up in the tall trees that I could see. It was still rather overcast and perhaps the insects weren’t moving around much.

Then I went back to the boardwalk, and finally found a tree with some activity in it. There was a tailorbird calling away, and finally I located a warbler, and got pretty lucky when he caught an insect and then flew over to a small branch in the open to eat it. I got a lot of shots. Unfortunately the warbler didn’t turn his head to give me a clear view of the crown, but in the 3rd image there is a hint of a crown stripe.

Overall I think this is good for Eastern. Crowner darker than Arctic. All pale bill base. Yellowish under tail (see image 4).
Mt Faber 6Oct13

From Danny

Saw one OHB & one Jap Sparrowhawk at Mt Faber.

Halus 04Oct13

From Con

Immature Red-breasted Parakeet

Bidadari 1Oct13

From Con