Tag Archives: Siberian Thrush

Looking back to a Birdiful November.

­­­­­­­­­I am sure that many of you like me had a super busy November chasing the many rare migrants that arrived here on their way south.

My lifer the female Narcissus Flycatcher at Dairy Farm Nature Park.

The highlight of the month for me had to be the female Narcissus Flycatcher that made landfall at Dairy Farm NP on 19th. I dipped on the past sightings at Bidadari and the last one here. As with the previous year, more gems like the Siberian and Eye-browed Thrushes dropped by to feed on the White Mulberries at the park.

A first winter male Siberian Thrush was the first to arrive. An adult male followed a few weeks later.

Most of us spent the first week getting roasted at Henderson Wave hoping to catch some rare raptors coming through. The lucky ones hit the jackpot with a juvenile Eurasian Hobby. I had to be contented with a Peregrine Falcon, Greater Spotted Eagle and a Jerdon’s Baza.   

This Jerdon’s Baza was one of the few raptors that came down low over Henderson Wave.

When news that some marsh terns were seen foraging off the Marina Barrage early in the month, many of us got great shots of the White-winged Terns flying over. A short walk to the granite sea wall rewarded me with some wintering Kentish Plovers although I was not able to find the recently split White-faced. Two Sanderlings were also wintering there.

A large number of these White-winged Terns were seen for the first time fishing off the Marina Barrage this season.
Kentish Plover at Marina Barrage sea wall. Their numbers were low this season.

Once again the Healing Garden at the Singapore Botanic Gardens was attracting many of the migrant flycatchers with a myriad of insect life there. All the three paradise flycatchers, including a white-morphed, were keeping us busy. I was happy to redo my male Blue and White Flycatcher here.

The male Blue and White Flycatcher with its black throat, one of the many flycatchers that descended on to the Healing Garden this season.

This may be our last season to bird at the open farmlands at Neo Tiew Harvest Link as all the plots have been sold. A few snipes were feeding at a wet patch at the end of the road. One was confirmed as the Common Snipe. Over 350 Pacific Golden Plovers were using the dry open spaces as their high tide roost. Up in the air, Marsh Harriers came and went on the same day, but a few Sand Martins stayed around to feed with the Aerodramus Swiftlets.

A few Sand Martins spent a few days foraging at the open grasslands at Neo Tiew Lane this month.

My year list is just below average at 190 partly because of Covid. I still hold up hope of reaching 200 by year end. Bring on December!

Dairy Farm and the Birdy Fig.

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The Siberian Thrushes just refused to show while I was there.

Dr. Chan Kai Soon from Ipoh first reported seeing one male and two female Siberian Thrushes,  Zoothera sibirica,  at Dairy Farm Nature Park on 16 November. This thrush is a rare passage migrant to Singapore with fewer than 20 records and not many photographs. When the news filtered out, the action swung from Bidadari to Dairy Farm.

Blue and White Flycatcher 1st Winter Male 26 Nov 2015 Dairy Farm
Blue and White Flycatcher 1st Winter Male 26 Nov 2015 Dairy Farm

A female and a male were photographed on the fig tree next to the Wallace Education Center on the 17th. It was fruiting but most of the figs were gone. It was the same tree that we had close views of the Eye-browed Thrush last year. It quickly became the hot spot for both photographers and birders this week. As luck would have it, a first winter male Blue and White Flycatcher  was also seen flitting in and out from the forest edge. It stayed for a few days long enough for Tan Ju Lin to break her jinx. It was a lifer for many who turned up. Everyone had a big smile on their faces on their way out.

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Best place to photograph the Asian Fairy Bluebird,

The bonus were a Mugimaki Flycatcher and a female Eye-browed Thrush, making brief appearances. While waiting for the target birds, the beautiful Asian Fairy Bluebirds kept everyone busy. It was a challenge to get bright images of this forest resident, especially the females, but we all loved the challenge.

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A pair of Hill Mynas came by to check what the fuss is all about.

Collectively, the list of birds that visited this fig was impressive. Apart from the species mentioned above, we had the Laced Woodpecker, Pink-necked and Thick-billed Pigeons, Asian Brown,Brown-chested and Dark-sided Flycatchers, Asian Gl0ssy Starling, Hill Myna, Yellow-vented, Cream-vented, Red-eyed, Olive-winged and Streaked Bulbul, Common Tailorbird and Crimson Sunbird. Please add in any other species not listed. Surprisingly the Red-crowned Barbet and the Flowerpeckers were no show.

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On the way in I spotted this green snail on the road. It turned out to be our endemic Singapore Green Tree Snail, a rare snail that is confined to the Central Catchment Forest. My first endemic species here.