Sunday, 28 December 2014

Turut Track, Tuas, Pulau Punggol 13Dec14

Danny, JS and I started the morning at Turut Track. Firstly, a Rusty-rumped Warbler welcomed us. It was pretty responsive to JS's "chacking".

Then a crake caught our attention. I turned out to be a rare migrant Baillon's Crake!


Also present was a pair of resident White-browed Crakes.


It was interesting to observe the interaction between the two species. The Baillon's Crake is smaller than the residents and whenever it gets too close to them, it will be chased off. At a point in time, they were busy minding their own business, foraging on the floating vegetation. Then the migrant and a resident locked eyes, and the latter began chasing the migrant off! On JS's intel, CH showed up and managed to get the rare migrant before the contractors started cutting the reeds.

In Kranji Marsh, JS spotted some Pygmy Halfbeaks.


Before we left, a Black-browed Reed Warbler made an appearance. Raptor-wise, we had 1 Black Baza, 1 Grey-headed Fish Eagle, 1 adult White-bellied Sea Eagle, 1 Brahminy Kite, 1 accipiter.

Moving on to Tuas, we met See Toh. He told us there was nothing in the woods. Sure enough, we found out the reason, a Japanese Sparrowhawk hiding in the woods. In the sky, we managed to count 3 Oriental Honey Buzzard, 1 Changeable Hawk Eagle, 4 Black-winged Kite, 2 Brahminy Kites (nesting), 1 White-bellied Sea Eagle.

After lunch, I headed to Pulau Punggol and found that there is now a new pond near the entrance. The old pond has been filled in and is now just a few shallow puddles. Initially, in the new pond, I found a couple of Little Ringed Plovers. Then one of the plovers flushed and together with it, three smaller waders trailed behind. These got to be stints. Scanning the pond further revealed nine more LRP and another stint. Now, I am able to observe it and confirm it's a Long-toed Stint.


There were also 2 Common Sandpipers and many Yellow Wagtails.
Singapore Quarry, Tuas 6Dec14

Danny, JS and I started the day at Dairy Farm (adventure centre side) and walked to Singapore Quarry. There were a bunch of alien fish species in the quarry, such as metre-long catfish and kois. Nevertheless, there were also smaller resident species like Whitespots and some barbs. Bird-wise, the only migrants of note were 3 Mugimaki Flycatchers. Residents of note included Straw-headed Bulbul (heard) and Stork-billed Kingfisher (1). Otherwise, it was a rather quiet morning.

Moving on to Tuas, we saw the Common Kestrel along Ave 5 near REC. Seems like this bird will be wintering here. At Ave 16, we met CH and Francis. The woods were alive with 3 Eyebrowed Thrushes and 2 Mugimaki Flycatchers. There was also a flock 7 White-shouldered Starlings in the vicinity. Later, CH showed us the Barn Owl at the fence. At a distance, it looked like it was caught in the fence. On closer inspection, it flew to the nearby tree. Glad it was safe and alive.

Sunday, 14 December 2014

East Coast Park, Marina East, Changi 29Nov14

From KH

This morning, while Con was enjoying Day 1 of his paid Thailand birding, Danny, Jia Sheng and I went for the Green Broadbill reported by See Toh two days ago. A figging tree between East Coast Park Carpark D1 and the nearest toilet was already full of Pink-necked Green Pigeons, Black-naped Orioles and a couple of Asian Koels. At about 0730, our spotter found the Green Broadbill. Now that we have seen it, it must be a disperser! No? :)


Green Broadbill at East Coast Park near Carpark D1

Satisfied with the sighting, Danny suggested we explore Marina East. It was a muddy walk full of escapees - parakeets (Rose-ringed and Red-breasted), bulbuls (Red-whiskered and Sooty-headed) and Yellow-fronted Canaries. The only raptors around were a pale morph Changeable Hawk Eagle and an adult Brahminy Kite. Other uncommon birds present were Banded Bay Cuckoo and Red-wattled Lapwing. By now it was 10 am and time to head to Changi.


Rose-ringed Parakeet at Marina East

At Changi, we had 9 raptor species: 3 Common Buzzards, 2 JSHs, 1 CSH, 2 BBs, 3 OHBs, 1 adult WBSE, 2 BWKs, 2 Brahminy Kites, 1 CHE. Danny and Jia Sheng saw a Large Hawk Cuckoo to round up the morning's birding. Due to the rainy weather, we called it a day after Bak Kut Teh lunch at Loyang.


One of three Common Buzzards at Changi


A worn pale juvenile OHB at Changi
Rifle Range, Tuas 22Nov14

Following Francis's report of a Yellow-eared Spiderhunter at Dillenia Hut on 20 Nov, Con, Danny, Jia Sheng and I went over today and was rewarded, not just with the spiderhunter, but also a Thick-billed Flowerpecker! The latter came back thrice to the bare tree above the hut and did its tail-wagging dance each time. See Toh and Kim Keang were also there to witness these rarities. Francis was too late and missed the flowerpecker. With the help of Danny's scope I was the only one who saw a Yellow-vented Flowerpecker, and Danny was the only one who got to see a male Lesser Green Leafbird.

Greater Green Leafbirds were more common - male, female and juvenile seen.


Male Greater Green Leafbird ©Con Foley

Other uncommon birds present at the tall fruiting tree: Cinereous Bulbul, Streaked Bulbul, 1 CB Malkoha, 1 SB Kingfisher.

Today's raptors over Dillenia Hut: 3 OHBs, 1 immature GHFE, 1 pale CHE, 2 WBSEs.
After lunch at NP, it was to Tuas again. Unfortunately, it started to drizzle, so I bailed out.

Saturday, 29 November 2014

Rifle Range, Tuas 15Nov14

From KH

Danny, JS and I went to Rifle Range in the morning. We reached Jelutong Tower at about 0745.
This morning's raptor watch (0745-1030) at Jelutong Tower with Danny and JS yielded 7 OHBs, 2 JSHs, 1 CSH, 3 Black Bazas, 1 Peregrine Falcon, 3 CHEs (2 dark, 1 juv pale), 1 GHFE (adult), 1 Brahminy Kite, 2 WBSEs.

The best animal today was a Red-tailed Racer, about 3 feet long.


Moving on to Tuas, we only got 2 migrant raptor species: OHBs and JSHs. The first surprise was the interesting flight pattern of Oriental Pratincoles. Eagle-eyed Low CH was the first to spot the flock of thermalling pratincoles. When we lock our bins on the flock, we witnessed about half of the flock flying clockwise and the other half anti-clockwise! We witness this pattern again later in the afternoon. The other surprise was a mixed flock of Cinereous and Streaked Bulbuls. Who would have guessed that these birds, that are known to associate with forests, appearing at Tuas.

From JS

Attached are three different photos of the Streaked Bulbul that we found in the small trees at TSA16 at 1pm.


Besides being a rare migrant, the sighting of the Streaked Bulbul presents a very good example of the passerine migration that could be taking place alongside the raptor migration.

So far, I have recorded 2 Brown-Chested Jungle Flycatchers, 1 Tiger Shrike, 1 male Mugimaki Flycatcher, 2 Streaked Bulbuls, 6 Cinereous Bulbuls, 1 immature Indian Cuckoo, 1 immature Malaysian Hawk Cuckoo, 1 Chestnut-Winged Cuckoo and 1 Black Bittern. These sightings reminded me of our birding at Pulau Punggol where we would see Large Hawk Cuckoo, Chestnut-Winged Cuckoos, Hawk Cuckoos, Indian Cuckoos, Drongo Cuckoos, Drongoes and Asian Brown Flycatchers appearing at different timings. It may be coincidence but I can't help it to think otherwise.
Halus 9Nov14

Today is the Annual Raptor Watch, Danny and I covered Halus this year due to Pulau Punggol being deforested and construction work going on. Alvin joined us again.

Migrants: 1 Jerdon's Baza, 1 dark morph Booted Eagle, 3 Black Baza, 8 JSH, 12 OHB, 1 unid accipiter
Residents: CHE, BWK, WBSE, Brahminy Kite
Others: 1 unid raptor


Left: Jerdon's Baza. Right: Booted Eagle (dark morph)
Tuas 8Nov14

Danny and JS started the day at Turut Track and got a Lanceolated Warbler.

Due to the morning rain, I did not join then, but went straight to Tuas at 9+.

Counters: JS, Danny, me, Seetoh, Lim KK, Francis, Ee Ling, Low CH

0910-1345 + 1500-1630 Total 1 Jap SH, 9 OHB, 1 Common Kestrel, 1 unid accipiter, 1 Indian Cuckoo

Ground Wind SW. Cloud Direction: SW

1 Common Kestrel made a few appearances throughout the day
1000-1100 7 OHB, 1 JSH, 1 unid Accipiter
1250 1 Indian Cuckoo
1630 2 OHB



Tuas 7Nov14

From GC

Look how long the bill is! @ TSA16


Eurasian Curlew migrating over Tuas

Sunday, 16 November 2014

Tuas 1Nov14

Counters: KH (1000-1700), Low CH/David Awcock (1430-1700), Woo Jiawei (1600-1700), Low CH/Lawrence Cher/Ron Chew/Chong Boon Leong/Ee Ling (0940-1200)

Ground Wind NW. Cloudy/overcast in morning. Light haze

0940-1700 Total 58 OHB, 10 JSH, 2 CSH, 2 Black Baza, 1 Common Kestrel, 1 P. falcon, 4 unID accipiter, 1 unID raptor, 1 Northern Boobook

0940-1000 1 Common Kestrel
1000-1100 43 OHB, 2 CSH, 1 BB, 3 unID accipiter
1100-1200 4 JSH
1200-1300 no migrant raptor
1300-1400 1 JSH
1400-1500 7 OHB, 1 unid accipiter
1500-1600 3 OHB, 1 JSH, 1 BB, 1 Northern Boobook
1600-1700 5 OHB, 4 JSH, 1 P. falcon, 1 unid raptor

Northern Boobook - 1st record for Singapore


Common Kestrel


Juvenile OHBs


Juvenile Japanese Sparrowhawk

Saturday, 15 November 2014

Singapore Bird Race 25-26Oct14

Danny, JS and I participated in this year's bird race and managed to emerge the winner for the very first time!

The flag-off was at Bishan Park, where we quickly ticked a few common birds before we had to go wader-watching (low tide was at about 6 pm). Our plan was to do a quick check at Seletar Dam and then Mandai Mudflat. To our horror, there were no waders at Seletar Dam, except for Common Sandpipers! Where did the waders go??

As the lights are dimming, we made a dash for Mandai Mudflat and were fortunate to catch the last lights. We had a good haul of waders, including Red-necked Stints and a Broad-billed Sandpiper.

Moving on to Turut Track, we head several Savanna Nightjars but failed to see any... Fortunately, we managed to tick Large-tailed Nightjar and Buffy Fish Owl. By now, it was about 8 pm and the decision was to have dinner and have a good rest. The tally so far: 39 species.

The next morning, we were at Rifle Range carpark at about 6 am. We heard a few Brown Hawk Owl, before connecting with one. We only heard one Collared Scops Owl, but did not connect with it. Soon the sun was out and after ticking off a few forest birds, it was time to climb the tower. Red-crowned Barbet and Chestnut-bellied Malkoha were good ticks, so were some bulbuls and flowerpeckers. We stayed on the tower till 8 am. If we had stayed a while longer, JS would have cleared his nemesis - Blue-rumped Parrot!

At the pump house, Danny first noticed an interesting bird, which soon turned out to be the bird of the day - Sakhalin Leaf Warbler (this bird has only be added to the Singapore checklist early this year!). Near the Rifle Range carpark, all three of us got our SG tick - Grey-faced Buzzard!


Next stop, Halus. A quick check at the tidal gates revealed White-winged and Whiskered Terns. At the wetland itself, the Little Grebes did not disappoint, but a Malaysian Hawk Cuckoo was a surprise catch.

After Halus was Pasir Ris Park for the Spotted Wood Owls, but we made a wasted trip - there were none present. A quick drop-by at Changi Village for packed lunch was yet another disappointment - no corella, no parakeet, no sparrow! Changi Cove did give us several species, but not all the birds during our recce...

It was not time for Bidadari. Brown-chested Jungle Flycatcher and Black Baza did not disappoint, but Tiger Shrike was nowhere to be found.

A quick check of NSRCC added Yellow Wagtail as expected. Turut Track and Neo Tiew added the final 10 species to our list, making 112. We later found out that we had only won the runner-up by 1 bird! All in all, a tiring, but rewarding race. Time to retired.

1) White-Vented Myna 1700h Bishan Park
2) White-Breasted Waterhen 1700h Bishan Park
3) Asian Koel 1700h Bishan Park
4) Common Pigeon 1705h Bishan Park
5) Barn Swallow 1705h Bishan Park
6) Pacific Swallow 1720h Yio Chu Kang Rd
7) Olive-Backed Sunbird 1720h Yio Chu Kang Rd
8) Black-Naped Oriole 1725h Yio Chu Kang Rd
9) Coppersmith Barbet 1728h Yio Chu Kang Rd
10) House Crow 1728h Yio Chu Kang Rd
11) Spotted Dove 1733h Jalan Kayu
12) Brown Shrike 1737h Seletar
13) Asian Glossy Starling 1740h Seletar
14) White-Throated Kingfisher 1740h Seletar
15) Little Egret 1750h Seletar Dam
16) Yellow-Billed Egret 1750h Seletar Dam
17) Grey Heron 1750h Seletar Dam
18) Striated Heron 1750h Seletar Dam
19) Daurian Starling 1750h Seletar Dam
20) Common Sandpiper 1750h Seletar Dam
21) House Swift 1800h Mandai Ave
22) Crested Honey-Buzzard 1800h Mandai Ave
23) White-Bellied Sea-Eagle 1805h Woodlands Rd
24) Brahminy Kite 1815-1855h Mandai Mudflat
25) Common Kingfisher 1815-1855h Mandai Mudflat
26) Collared Kingfisher 1815-1855h Mandai Mudflat
27) Common Redshank 1815-1855h Mandai Mudflat
28) Common Greenshank 1815-1855h Mandai Mudflat
29) Lesser Sand Plover 1815-1855h Mandai Mudflat
30) Pacific Golden Plover 1815-1855h Mandai Mudflat
31) Whimbrel 1815-1855h Mandai Mudflat
32) Marsh Sandpiper 1815-1855h Mandai Mudflat
33) Red-Necked Stint 1815-1855h Mandai Mudflat
34) Broad-Billed Sandpiper 1815-1855h Mandai Mudflat
35) Curlew Sandpiper 1815-1855h Mandai Mudflat
36) Great Egret 1815-1855h Mandai Mudflat
37) Little Tern 1815-1855h Mandai Mudflat
38) Large-Tailed Nightjar 1915h Neo Tiew Lane 3
39) Buffy Fish Owl 1950h Turut Track
40) Brown Hawk Owl 0615h Rifle Range
41) Siberian Blue Robin 0645h Rifle Range
42) Greater Racket-Tailed Drongo 0650-0715h Rifle Range
43) Orange-Bellied Flowerpecker 0650-0715h Rifle Range
44) Pin-Striped Tit-Babbler 0650-0715h Rifle Range
45) Dark-Necked Tailorbird 0650-0715h Rifle Range
46) Asian Paradise Flycatcher 0650-0715h Rifle Range
47) Fork-Tailed Swift 0650-0715h Rifle Range
48) Blue-Tailed Bee-Eater 0650-0715h Rifle Range
49) Asian Fairy Bluebird 0650-0715h Rifle Range
50) Short-Tailed Babbler 0650-0715h Rifle Range
51) Long-Tailed Parakeet 0650-0715h Rifle Range
52) Olive-Winged Bulbul 0720-0825h Jelutong Tower
53) Banded Woodpecker 0720-0825h Jelutong Tower
54) Red-Crowned Barbet 0720-0825h Jelutong Tower
55) Common Hill Myna 0720-0825h Jelutong Tower
56) Oriental Dollarbird 0720-0825h Jelutong Tower
57) Forest Wagtail 0720-0825h Jelutong Tower
58) Thick-Billed Green Pigeon 0720-0825h Jelutong Tower
59) Crimson Sunbird 0720-0825h Jelutong Tower
60) Chestnut-Bellied Malkoha 0720-0825h Jelutong Tower
61) Blue-Crowned Hanging-Parrot 0720-0825h Jelutong Tower
62) Asian Brown Flycatcher 0720-0825h Jelutong Tower
63) Arctic Warbler 0720-0825h Jelutong Tower
64) Pink-Necked Green Pigeon 0720-0825h Jelutong Tower
65) Red-Rumped Swallow 0720-0825h Jelutong Tower
66) Scarlet-Backed Flowerpecker 0720-0825h Jelutong Tower
67) Asian Red-Eyed Bulbul 0830h Rifle Range
68) Sakhalin Leaf Warbler 0850h Rifle Range
69) Grey-Faced Buzzard 0910h Rifle Range
70) Yellow-Rumped Flycatcher 0910h Rifle Range
71) Sooty-Headed Bulbul 0947h-1025h Halus
72) Common Goldenback 0947h-1025h Halus
73) Changeable Hawk Eagle 0947h-1025h Halus
74) Pied Triller 0947h-1025h Halus
75) Brown-Throated Sunbird 0947h-1025h Halus
76) Little Grebe 0947h-1025h Halus
77) Japanese Sparrowhawk 0947h-1025h Halus
78) Yellow-Vented Bulbul 0947h-1025h Halus
79) Golden-Bellied Gerygone 0947h-1025h Halus
80) Baya Weaver 0947h-1025h Halus
81) Malaysian Hawk Cuckoo 0947h-1025h Halus
82) Common Iora 0947h-1025h Halus
83) White-Winged Tern 1030-1100h Halus
84) Paddyfield Pipit 1030-1100h Halus
85) Savanna Nightjar 1030-1100h Halus
86) Long-Tailed Shrike 1030-1100h Halus
87) Whiskered Tern 1030-1100h Halus
88) Cattle Egret 1103h Pasir Ris Farmway
89) Grey-Headed Fish-Eagle 1133h Pasir Ris
90) Black-Winged Kite 1200-1300h Changi
91) Common Myna 1200-1300h Changi
92) Zebra Dove 1200-1300h Changi
93) Scaly-Breasted Munia 1200-1300h Changi
94) Black-Headed Munia 1200-1300h Changi
95) Common Tailorbird 1200-1300h Changi
96) Zitting Cisticola 1200-1300h Changi
97) Asian Drongo-Cuckoo 1200-1300h Changi
98) Chinese Sparrowhawk 1200-1300h Changi
99) Brown-Chested Jungleflycatcher 1400h Bidadari
100) Black Baza 1400h Bidadari
101) Yellow Wagtail 1455h NSRCC
102) Red-Breasted Parakeet 1455h Neo Tiew Lane 3
103) Tiger Shrike 1500-1600h Turut Track
104) Sunda Pygmy Woodpecker 1500-1600h Turut Track
105) Pied Fantail 1500-1600h Turut Track
106) Red Turtle Dove 1500-1600h Turut Track
107) Lineated Barbet 1500-1600h Turut Track
108) Purple Heron 1500-1600h Turut Track
109) White-Crested Laughingthrush 1500-1600h Turut Track
110) Red-Wattled Lapwing 1500-1600h Turut Track
111) Sand Martin 1500-1600h Turut Track
112) Large-Billed Crow 1500-1600h Turut Track
Turut Track, Tuas 25Oct14

Danny and I started the day recceing Turut Track and were rewarded with a juvenile Greater Spotted Eagle! It was first mobbed by 2 WBSE and 1 Brahminy Kite at about 10 am. Then at about 1030 am, we saw it being mobbed again, now by 2 Brahminy Kites.


Later we found Brahminy Kites nesting on a tower.


A quick drop-by at NSRCC revealed only Yellow Wagtails and no plover. Then, at the sand pile area, Danny spotted a few Sand Martins.

After Turut Track, we headed to E2I to fetch Jia Sheng and then to Tuas.

1330-1515 Total 3 JSH, 101 OHB
Ground Wind - SW. Hot and slightly hazy
(1330-1400 90 OHB
1400-1440 3 JSH, 11 OHB)
Tuas 23Oct14

From GC

Greater Spotted Eagle, 1st of the season!



It just gets better... 10 mins after the GSE... 1st of the season... a Black Kite!

Changi, Pasir Ris, Serangoon, Tuas 22Oct14

Danny, JS and I went on a recce before the bird race. We started at Changi. Not bad - Black Drongo, Red Avadavats, Oriental Reed Warbler, Red Collared Dove and 3 species of munias (White-headed, Black-headed and Scaly-breasted).

Moving on to Pasir Ris Park, the Buffy was not around, but the pair of Spotted Wood Owls were.

Next at Serangoon Tidal Gates, the terns were still around, so was the Rosy Starling.

Lastly, we went to Tuas for lunch and some raptor-watching, but the rainy and overcast
weather seems to have prevented any raptors from migrating - there was a grand total of
0 raptor!

Sunday, 9 November 2014

Rifle Range, Tuas 18Oct14

Danny and I went to Rifle Range for the Asian House Martin reported by Francis Yap on 16-17 Oct, and sure enough the bird was still around. So are Grey-rumped Treeswift, swallows (Red-rumped, BarnPacific) and swiftlets. There were also 3 species of bulbuls (Red-eyed, Cream-vented, Olive-winged) and a juvenile Japanese Sparrowhawk.


Juvenile Japanese Sparrowhawk at Jelutong Tower

After that, we headed to Tuas for our usual raptor count.

Counters: Danny, Tan KH, Lee EL
Weather: slightly cloudy turning to overcast, PSI in 70+
Ground Wind: SW
1230-1615 Total 1 Booted Eagle, 18 OHB, 14 JSH, 2 CSH, 15 Fork-tailed Swift, 1 Schrenck's Bittern, 10 White-shouldered Starling, 50 PGP

1230-1300 6 OHB, 1 JSH
1300-1400 2 OHB, 9 JSH, 2 CSH
1400-1500 1 Booted Eagle, 10 OHB, 4 JSH, 4 Fork-tailed Swift
1500-1600 11 Fork-tailed Swift, 1 Schrenck's Bittern, 10 White-shouldered Starling
1600-1615 50 PGP


Collage of a single dark morph Booted Eagle


Juvenile Japanese Sparrowhawk hunted an Eurasian Tree Sparrow and tearing it up!


Fork-tailed Swifts


Pacific Golden Plovers
Japanese Garden 15Oct14

From Con

Immature Chinese Sparrowhawk taken over JG on Wednesday.

Tuesday, 28 October 2014

Bidadari 12Oct14

From KH

After a Chestnut-cheeked Starling was photographed yesterday, there were a whole lot of birders and photographers looking for this rare starling today morning. However, the bird was nowhere to be found, although the main flock of Purple-backed Starlings were flying around.


Tiger Shrikes and Brown-chested Jungle Flycatcher were also around.

From Danny

Went back to Bida with Jia Sheng in the late afternoon, with scope scan another 40 to 50 PB Starlings but no sign of Cheeky. Jia Sheng took some flight shots but all had scapular bars. Around 6.30 pm, a long stretch out kettle, approx 900 to a thousand starlings gatthered and flew across Bartley Road towards the direction of Lorong Ong Lye/Upper Paya Lebar Road. The long chain kettle flew down out of sight among a cluster of green trees with the roof of a Chinese temple in the background - believe the PB Starlings roosted beyond Bida.
Mandai Mudflat, Tuas 11Oct14

Con, Danny and I started at Mandai Mudflat, but there were no rare waders. Nevertheless, Con managed to tick the Red-necked Stint for his BY.

Reaching Tuas at about 10 am, Ee Ling and See Toh were on site already.

Counters: Ee Ling/Con/See Toh (AM), Wing Chong (lunchtime), Jacky Soh (pm), Danny/Tan KH (1000-1545)

Cloudy with 90-100% cover. Ground wind 15 km/h from S generally. Hazy with PSI reading rising thru' the morning (0900 PSI 82 to 1500 PSI 106) - smoke stacks at Tg Pelepas could not be seen

Total count (0900-1545): 191 OHBs, 1 JSH, 4 unid raptors, 2 Oriental Pratincoles, 1 flock of PGP, 4 Fork-tailed Swifts, 4 Blue-tailed Bee-eaters, 1 Red-rumped Swallow.

0900-1200 No migrating raptor, 4 Fork-tailed Swift flying NE to SW, 2 Oriental Pratincole, 1 Red-rumped Swallow, 4 Blue-tailed BE, flock of PGP
1200-1300 3 unID raptor, 19 OHB
1300-1400 11 OHB
1400-1500 131 OHB, 1 JSH
1500-1545 30 OHB, 1 unid dark raptor
Tuas 8-9Oct14

From GC

8 Oct 1000-1700

Counter: Tan GC
Ground Wind - SSW-S
Total 486 OHB, 3 Jap SH, 1 Peregrine

1100-1200 7 OHB, 1 Peregrine
1300-1400 139 OHB
1400-1500 204 OHB
1500-1600 97 OHB, 2 Jap SH
1600-1700 39 OHB, 1 Jap SH

9 Oct 1000-1600

Counters: Tan GC, Alan Owyong, Lim KK, Timothy Lim, Yap Eu Hian, Lee How Sung
Ground Wind - SE.
Total 12 OHB, 5 Jap SH

1100-1200 2 JSH
1200-1300 10 OHB, 3 JSH
1300-1400 2 OHB
Tuas 5-6Oct14

From EL on 5 Oct

0900-1630. Windy throughout generally from SW. Very cloudy with 95-100% cloud cover.

0900-1000: 1 unID accipiter
1000-1100: 1 CSH, 1 Oriental Pratincole, 3 Blue-tailed Bee-eaters
1100-1200: 2 OHB (flying from NW individually). Close to 1200, we saw 2 unID raptors circling quite low - sparrowhawk like, very pale underparts except for narrow dark wing tips, grey uppers
1300-1400: 1 unID raptor

Danny (AM), Han Yong Kwong , Ee Ling

From EL and GC on 6Oct

0900-1700. Total 265 OHB, 6 Jap SH, 1 Chinese SH, 1 Peregrine Falcon, 18 unID accipiter, 4 unID raptor. Light high cloud cover initially, increasing to about 90-95%. Wind from SW 10-15kmh. Haze at lower level, 3hr PSI at 63 at 0900, rising to 136 by 1700. Reduced visibility, can't see Tg Pelepas cranes.

0900-1000 1 Jap SH
1000-1100 2 OHB (1st a male) from NW, 1 Jap SH, 4 unID accipiter (flying thru' together in N-S direction)
1100-1200 2 unID raptor heading SSW together (originally 1 more unID raptor suspected to be RBE but turned out to be pale CHE), 3 PGPlover
1200-1300 1 JSH, 1 CSH, 3 unID accipiter
1300-1400 1 JSH, 1 unID accipter, 9 OHB
1400-1500 2 JSH, 9 unID accipiter, 18 OHB, 1 Peregrine, 4 unID raptor
1500-1600 196 OHB, 1 unID accipiter
1600-1700 40 OHB.

Counters: Danny & Lau Jia Sheng, Low Choon How, Con Foley, Tan Kok Hui, Jacky Soh, Francis Yap, Tan Gim Cheong (PM) & Ee Ling (AM)


This pale raptor got us excited for a while, but it turned out to be a second year pale morph Changeable Hawk Eagle. ©Con Foley

Singapore Strait 5Oct14

Con went on a pelagic trip with the Bird Group and here is Alan OwYong's report.
SBWR, Tuas 4Oct14

Danny, JS and I started the day at SBWR, but there were nothing much there, just the usual redshank, greenshank, marsh sp., PGP, LSP, whimbrel, common sp. and 3 curlew sp.

Moving on to Tuas, we met with inclement weather and waited out at the hawker centre. Later, we met up with Low CH and wife at Tuas South Ave 16 and stayed from 1000-1430h.

Here's the count for the day:
1200-1300: 8 unid accipiters
1300-1400: 1 Peregrine Falcon japonicus

There were also 3 Oriental Pratincoles, 2 Red-rumped Swallows and 4 Blue-tailed Bee-eaters heading East.

Wednesday, 8 October 2014

Mandai Mudflat, SBWR, Tuas 27Sep14

Last Sat, Danny, JS and I started at Mandai Mudflat and saw 4 juvenile Great Knots, 43 Red-necked Stints, 1 Broad-billed Sandpiper, 1 Curlew Sandpiper, some Marsh Sandpipers, Common Sandpipers, lots of LSPs, PGPs, Greenshanks, Redshanks, Whimbrels, as well as 1 breeding Whiskered Tern, many Little Terns, Great Egrets, Little Egrets, Grey Herons, Little Herons.

Juvenile Great Knot (front), Terek Sandpiper (middle) and Common Redshank (back) ©Lau JS


JS tried very hard to turn one of these Red-necked Stints into Little Stint, but to no avail. ©Lau JS


There were also 1 Tiger Shrike and 1 Asian Paradise Flycatcher in the trees.

Moving on to SBWR, there were still 4 Black-tailed Godwits, plus many Whimbrels, Redshanks, Greenshanks, PGPs, Marsh Sandpipers, Common Sandpipers, but no LSP, stint or knot.

Next stop, Tuas. 2 Chinese Sparrowhawks (including 1 adult male), 1 female Japanese Sparrowhawk, 6 unid accipiters, 1 unid raptor, plus the usual residents WBSE (1), BK (>4), BWK (1). The migrants were moving eastward. The clouds were not moving!
Turut Track, SBWR, Tuas 20Sep14

Attendees: Con, Danny, JS

From JS

Glad to be birding again after almost 2 months of non-birding.

We started the day at Turut Track and walked the distance to ponds at Neo Tiew Lane 2. The habitat looks good for migratory waterbirds. If we could have no human disturbances in the next few months, this could be a great place to start breaking the duck! Although the "many" cinnamon bitterns did not show, we saw a scaly Brown Shrike and a probable Fork-Tailed Swift. No violet cuckoo.

Next, we visited Sungei Buloh. No stints. However, it is still nice to know that the 8 juvenile Black-tailed Godwits and 1 adult Grey-Tailed Tattler are still around.

Our last birding site for the day was Tuas. We were informed of the presence of 8 accipiters (by Choon How) and saw another 7 individuals. In total, we (including Choon How and Kim Keang) had 14 unid accipiters and 1 adult Japanese Sparrowhawk. In case you want to verify how we are unable to id the accipiters, I have attached 2 photos of the 7 individuals. No Short-Toed Snake Eagle or Shikra.

Serangoon, Poyan 14Sep14

Just the usual birds at Serangoon. Best find is a foot-long Equatorial Spitting Cobra looking for food. At Poyan, Danny also counted the usual birds, including the Blue-winged Pittas.
Serangoon Poyan
1 Red Junglefowl 1
2 Sunda Pygmy Woodpecker 5
3 Banded Woodpecker 2
4 Common Goldenback 1 3
5 Lineated Barbet 2
6 Oriental Dollarbird 1
7 White-Throated Kingfisher 1 3
8 Collared Kingfisher 2
9 Blue-Throated Bee-Eater 2
10 Banded Bay Cuckoo 1
11 Little Bronze-Cuckoo 1
12 Asian Koel 3 1
13 Lesser Coucal 1
14 Rose-Ringed Parakeet 2
15 Red-Breasted Parakeet 16
16 Long-Tailed Parakeet 4 12
17 Swiftlet spp. 11 22
18 Common Pigeon 9
19 Spotted Dove 12 20
20 Zebra Dove 14 10
21 Pink-Necked Green Pigeon 4 11
22 White-Breasted Waterhen 3 2
23 Common Sandpiper 4
24 Red-Wattled Lapwing 6
25 Brahminy Kite 1
26 White-Bellied Sea Eagle 1
27 Changeable Hawk-Eagle 2
28 Little Egret 1
29 Grey Heron 3
30 Purple Heron 1
31 Striated Heron 11
32 Black-Crowned Night Heron 1
33 Golden-Bellied Gerygone 3 1
34 House Crow 3
35 Large-Billed Crow 3
36 Black-Naped Oriole 6 9
37 Pied Triller 3
38 Pied Fantail 5 2
39 Greater Racket-Tailed Drongo 1
40 Common Iora 6 6
41 Oriental Magpie-Robin 1 1
42 Asian Glossy Starling 36 32
43 White-Vented Myna 36 27
44 Barn Swallow 1
45 Pacific Swallow 3 7
46 Straw-Headed Bulbul 3
47 Yellow-Vented Bulbul 8 16
48 Olive-Winged Bulbul 3
49 Zitting Cisticola 1
50 Yellow-Bellied Prinia 2
51 Common Tailorbird 3 3
52 Dark-Necked Tailorbird 2
53 Ashy Tailorbird 8 2
54 Arctic Warbler 1
55 White-Crested Laughingthrush 5
56 Scarlet-Backed Flowerpecker 3 3
57 Brown-Throated Sunbird 3 3
58 Olive-Backed Sunbird 8 5
59 Eurasian Tree Sparrow 9
60 Yellow Wagtail 2
61 Paddyfield Pipit 1 2
62 Baya Weaver 2
63 Scaly-Breasted Munia 3 3
64 White-Headed Munia 6
Total Species 43 46
Total No. 243 272

Monday, 29 September 2014

Turut Track, SBWR, Mandai Mudflat, Seletar Dam 6Sep14

From KH

Thanks to Danny's good suggestion, we started at Turut Track and managed to reach Kranji Marsh from there. It is a great place for almost all the breeding resident raptors - GHFE (1), BWK (1), WBSE (1), Brahminy Kites (2) and CHE (1 heard).

Other notables were Cinnamon Bitterns (4), Common Moorhens (2), Red-wattled Lapwings (>5) and Common Kingfishers (2).

Also present were common birds like Laced WP (1 male), Common Goldenback (1), Sunda WP (1 heard), bee-eaters, Banded Bay Cuckoo (1 heard), Lesser Coucals, Long-tailed Parakeets, Purple Herons (4), waterhens, Large-billed Crows (1), Oriental Magpie Robin (1 female), laughingthrushes, fantails, ioras, Ashy Tailorbird (1), Common Tailorbirds.

The greatest surprise was a Malayan Box Terrapin! ©Danny Lau


A quick check at NSRCC yielded Little Ringed Plovers (2) and Yellow Wagtail (1).

Soon it was high tide and we reached SBWR in time to catch Black-tailed Godwits (5 juveniles), Grey-tailed Tattler (1 in partial breeding plumage), Whimbrels (>25), Common Sandpipers and lots of Redshanks.


Grey-tailed Tattler molting out of breeding plumage ©Danny Lau

At the sluice gate opposite Platform 1, we saw Marsh Sandpiper (1), Greenshanks and more Redshanks. There was also a Saltwater Crocodile (~2.5m) sunning itself with mouth agape. ©Danny Lau


A loop round the mangrove boardwalk near the entrance yielded nothing much except for Violet Vinegar Crab's diet - one was feeding on fallen leaf, the other on moss.

After lunch, tide was still high, but receding. A scan of Mandai Mudflat revealed Red-necked Stint (1) and lots of Lesser Sand Plovers. A scan in another direction revealed another Grey-tailed Tattler - this time a juvenile. Soon more and more waders came - PGPs, Whimbrels, Greenshanks, Redshanks, Common Sandpipers and more LSPs. No GSP, but another croc!


Estuarine Crocodile with Whimbrels, Redshanks, PGP and Grey Heron ©Danny Lau

There were also Little Terns (5), Great Egret (1), Little Egrets, Grey Herons, Little Herons.

Next up: Seletar Dam. There were not many waders around - Curlew Sandpiper (1 juvenile), PGPs, LSPs, Common Sandpipers. Again no GSP.

A quick check on P. Punggol revealed busy construction work and guarded entrance. Many trees have been felled. Now we worry about shelter and Booted Eagle during raptor watch!

Thursday, 4 September 2014

Bishan Park, SBWR, Bidadari 23Aug14

Con, Danny and I went to Bishan Park. It was nice to see some Grey-rumped Treeswifts, including this male.


There was a pair of Black-naped Orioles getting intimate.


A pair of Slaty-breasted Rails were out in the open totally ignoring our presence.


However, we did not see the Malaysian Hawk Cuckoo, nor Con's much-desired BY tick - Violet Cuckoo. Little Bronze Cuckoos were heard though.

Soon it was late morning and high tide, so we headed to Sungei Buloh for some wader-watching. There were not many birds around, only Redshanks, Greenshanks, 1 Marsh Sandpiper and some Common Sandpipers.

After lunch, Danny and I went to Bidadari. Spotted Wood Owl was on the same tree, but now there were two! We were surprised that there were no migrants yet, no flycatcher, no drongo, just the common birds.