Showing posts from January, 2015

Up Close with Common Iora

Some common birds can provide us with intriguing features or characteristics which we may at times overlook in the field. One of those birds is the Common Iora (Aegithina tiphia). Common as it may sound, it is actually not even in the top ten list of birds sighted in Malaysia (see extract of record taken from Bird i-Witness below).
1. Oriental Magpie-robin   (Copsychus saularis)                          
2. Yellow-vented Bulbul   (Pycnonotus goiavier)                        
3. Pacific Swallow             (Hirundo tahitica)                              
4. Greater Racket-tailed Drongo   (Dicrurus remifer)                  
5. White-throated Kingfisher  (Halcyon smyrnensis)                  
6. Pin Stripped Tit-babbler     (Macronous gularis)                    
7. Crested Serpent-eagle  (Spilornis cheela)                              
8. Spotted Dove  (Streptopelia chinensis)                                    
9. Little Egret     (Egretta garzetta

Green-Billed Malkoha

There are three main characteristics which can be used to determine this malkoha:

i) whitish border around eye orbital ii) greyish head and breast iii) long tail
Any of those three features can be used to tell this malkoha apart from the rest of the other malkohas - lets say "black-bellied" or "chestnut-bellied". I have also noticed that the area around its eye orbital is more reddish as compared to "black-bellied" which is more orangey.  I reckoned only the tail feature will be hard to gauge if it is in molt or been ripped apart.

Apparently this species of malkoha is from the family of cuckoos ("cuculidae") but a non-parasitic one. According to the "Handbook of the Birds of the World", there are six (6) subspecies which are currently been recognised. The 6 subspecies and its distribution are as follows:
i) Phaenicophaeus trisis trisis - Northern India, through outer Himalayas, Nepal, Bhutan, Assam, Bangladesh to Madhya Pradesh (Lesso…

Birds in Flight at Bagan Belat

Year 2014 was certainly a tragic and unforgettable year for all i am sure - 3 planes crashed, major floods, shocking death of Robbin Williams, M. Schumacher bang his head on the stone, extremism, no promotion, my car got wrecked, etc etc.

To start the new year, here are some of the flight shots of the birds taken at Bagan Belat, Penang recently.
Terns sighted here were mainly consisted of Whiskered, White Winged and Little Terns
I believe this could be a Whiskered Tern or is it a Little Tern?

They have certainly enjoyed flying together
The only time i could witnessed such abundance of terns was off the coast of Kuala Selangor.

A sea full of terns and waders.

From the above photos, you can see some sand plovers, pacific golden plovers, curlew sandpipers, and terns - a cosmopolitan of shore birds !

The best of the lots was certainly this Brown-Headed Gull.

Once they are tired of circling around it was time to land...

led by a Common Greenshank !