Tag Archives: Grey-rumped Treeswift

August’s Birding Moments.

August can be a quiet month for birding even though some early migrants started to  arrive. Most of us were taking things easy waiting for the onslaught of of the winter visitors from the Northern Asia in September.

It was not a productive month for me as well being away on holiday for the last week of the month. Here were some of the common species caught doing their things.


The breeding period for these Sunda Pygmy Woodpeckers is from February to August. This pair at Pasir Ris Park is either late starters or thinking of raising a second brood. Did not check if they eventually used this nest hole but it was hard work excavating this in early August. The flying chippings rendering some movements to the shot.


Another late nesting was the Grey-rumped Treeswifts as previous nestings were in April. This mother was seen feeding a juvenile at one-north crescent in mid August. The small cup nest was built on the branch of a roadside tree. Previous nesting was also recorded near by at Kent Ridge.


When the figs and other berries are not available, these Pink-necked Pigeons will come down low to feed on the dried seeds of the Melastoma Plant, a favorite of the Flowerpeckers.


Now I know why the Grey Herons chose to nest by at the Jurong Lakesides. The water surrounding the gardens are shallow and they can wade around and hunt with ease. A bit of action in the shot with the water trails.


When a bird rests on a clean perch at eye level, you have to shoot it even though it is a common species and you have plenty of them in your hard disk. Showing the grassland habitat of TEG adds a bit more to this Red-whiskered Bulbul in the shot.


Yes the tigers are back and good to see that they still dropped by Bidadari even though a large part of it have been cleared for housing. This area will be part of the 9 hectare Town Park which will be ready before the new owners move in. Lets hope they will keep coming back.


Did not have time to chase after these Yellow-rumped Flycatchers that started arriving by the end of the August. By early September, they were reported all over the island. Again we are glad that quite a good number were seen at Bidadari this season.

Reference: Lim Kim Seng. The Avifauna of Singapore. Nature Society (Singapore) 2009



The Grey-rumped Treeswifts of Bishan Park

The Grey-rumped Treeswift, Hemiprocne longipennis, is the only resident treeswift in Singapore. They were frequently seen hawking for insects over the Palm Valley of the Botanic Gardens up to a few years back. In May 2013, a pair was first seen nesting at Bishan Park (S.Ng in litt 2015). Since then, they have been reported using the low trees along the bicycle path to nest on a regular basis. Shirley Ng once counted four nestings at the park but only one juvenile fledged. She thinks that the low success rate could be due to the fragility of the nest cup, predation by crows and sterile eggs.

This year another pair was seen feeding a juvenile at its small cup shaped nest not too high above ground. The  nest was on an Aantoi or Cotton Fruit Tree , Sandoricum koetjape, (S. Ng). This juvenile appeared to be well over a month old. There was another older juvenile around, most likely from an earlier nesting. We hope to see more of these tree swifts making a home here at the park.

Whiskered Tree Swift Juv.
The chick was sitting on the nest which is only 6 meters above ground just by the bicycle path. The nest is on a Cotton Fruit Tree.
The father took up a perch close to the chick ready to fend off any would be predators.
The cup shaped nest was about the size of a 50 cents coin, attached to a thin branch and opened to the elements. 
The mother was earlier seen flying around hawking for insect over the river. We waited for an hour before it flew back to feed the chick.
Juvenile Whiskered Tree Swift
This juvenile started stretching and flapping its wings after enjoying a satisfying meal. Happy to catch it at full stretch.
It is not the prettiest chick around but it will blend in with the branches.
Sub-adult Grey-rumped Tree Swift
This sub-adult was from an earlier nesting most probably by another pair.