Mike Birder - Malaysian Birds

Hi

Welcome to my Malaysian Birding Blog. I migrated to blogspot.com as my blog at multiply.com closed shop in 2012. I wish to showcase all Malaysian birds that I have photographed whether here or overseas. My countdown of lifers started in 2005. As of January 2017 my countdown of lifers photograph has reached
477/668 species of birds of Malaysia.

My shooting gear are a EF400mm f4 DO lens and Canon 7D body which to me is the ideal setup for mobility and bird chasing. Eventhen the weight over my shoulder is more that 5.5 kg. As of June 2016 I have also acquired a Fuji XF 100-400mm OIS lens to complement my travelling cum birding trip overseas. The Fuji X-T2 is now in hand ; the weight over my shoulder is much lighter now.

I am a weekend birder. Do feel free to drop me a line at mikebirding@gmail.com and I see whether you can tag along in my outings. My usual day trip is just an hour ride away to Hulu Langat, Lancang Kemensah, Krau, Awana, Hulu Kali, Gombak Ole Road, Fraser's Hill , Bukit Tinggi and KSNP & Coastal Sg Janggut . Overnite trip to Merapoh & Cameron, Air Hitam and further north to Kuala Sidim is a seldom affair and when the family permit. Panti in Johor is another good birding site that I yet to go. Then there are the Borneo birds of Sabah and Sarawak of Malaysia which I seriously much go to chalk up more lifers

WARNING Birding is an addiction once you started its hard to stop. The wifey and children are now birding widow and orphan.

Translate

Search for Malaysian Bird Photos

Tuesday, 17 November 2015

SWALLOW 2/4 - Pacific Swallow



Pacific Swallows eat insects, catching them during flight. To feast on swarming insects, they may join other birds like Swifts. But unlike Swifts that simply trawl the air with their mouths open, Swallows don't hunt on the wing. They perch and wait, then actually chase after individual prey and perform aerial acrobatics to catch them. Swallows also hunt at lower levels than Swifts.

Unlike Swifts, Swallows can perch and also come to the ground to drink or gather nesting material.

Pacific Swallows are found everywhere, but usually near water and open country. In Singapore, they are particularly common along the coasts, and also found in mangroves.

Pacific Swallows are resident. They are never found in such huge flocks as the visiting Barn Swallows, which they closely resemble.

Although they may feed together with Barn Swallows, they don't join the Barn Swallows huge roosts.



Resident Pacific Swallows nest on vertical surfaces with overhangs to protect their mud nest (which would disintegrate in the rain). These may be cliffs with an overhang but are often bridges, dams and other man-made structures. But they shy away from humans and prefer unoccupied buildings. They build solid nests out of mud pellets brought by the beakful from puddles and river banks. Combined with dry grasses, these pellets are arranged much like bricks to form shallow cups. These may be lined with dry grass and feathers. At a particularly suitable nest site, they may form large colonies. Usually 3 white eggs are laid. These are long and pointed and have brown spots.

SWALLOW 3/4 - Barn Swallow

When perched, the sparrow-sized Barn Swallow appears cone shaped, with a slightly flattened head, no visible neck, and broad shoulders that taper to long, pointed wings. The tail extends well beyond the wingtips and the long outer feathers give the tail a deep fork.

Barn Swallows have a steely blue back, wings, and tail, and rufous to tawny underparts. The blue crown and face contrast with the cinnamon-colored forehead and throat. White spots under the tail can be difficult to see except in flight. Males are more boldly colored than females.


Barn Swallows feed on the wing, snagging insects from just above the ground or water to heights of 100 feet or more. They fly with fluid wingbeats in bursts of straight flight, rarely gliding, and can execute quick, tight turns and dives. When aquatic insects hatch, Barn Swallows may join other swallow species in mixed foraging flocks. 


You can find the adaptable Barn Swallow feeding in open habitats from fields, parks, and roadway edges to marshes, meadows, ponds, and coastal waters. Their nests are often easy to spot under the eaves or inside of sheds, barns, bridges and other structures

SWALLOW 1/4 - Rufous-rumped Swallow



There five races of Striated Swallow. The Malaysian Peninsula's one is called H.s.Badia. It has faintly streaked deep rufous underparts, and an unstreaked rump. It is sometimes raised to species status as the Rufous-bellied Swallow, Hirundo badia except it is larger, more heavily streaked, and has a less distinct neck collar. Striated Swallow is 19 cm long with a deeply forked tail.
The sexes are alike but juveniles are duller and browner, with a paler rump and shorter outer tail feathers.

Striated Swallow breeds from February to September alone or semi-colonially with scattered nests. The nest is a retort or bottle shaped structure, made from mud pellets and lined with dried grasses and feathers. The clutch is usually four, sometimes five, white eggs except for badia, where two eggs is normal. Both sexes build the nest, and share incubation and the care of the young. Nests are constructed in natural caves, but very often in artificial sites on bridges, in culverts and on buildings.

They are found water shed open ground and cliff side upto an elevation of 2,400m. Striated Swallow feeds low over the ground or at cliff faces on flying insects. It has a slow buoyant flight compared to Barn Swallow. It will feed with other swallow species.


zoglandboy wrote on Nov 10, '11
These fascinating swallows recalls me of Frigatebirds when I first saw them flying around my high school during weekly assembly, if split, this Rufous-bellied (badia) would be a regional endemic to the Malay Peninsular, definitely going to be one of the most regular species of regional endemic here I guess since it was capable to enter urban settings near limestone cliffs. You can see a lot on Fraser's nowadays also.


Photo taken at Kuala Kedah coastal side. There is a swiftlet farm in the middle of the padi field inland side........

The Red-rumped Swallow (Cecropis daurica) is a small passerine bird in the swallow family. It breeds in open hilly country of temperate southern Europe and Asia from Portugal and Spain to Japan, India and tropical Africa. The Indian and African birds are resident, but European and other Asian birds are migratory. They winter in Africa or India and are vagrants to Christmas Island and northern Australia. So in Peninsula Malaysia they are passage migrant or visitor.

They have blue upperparts and dusky underparts. They resemble Barn Swallows, but are darker below and have pale or reddish rumps, face and neck collar. They lack a breast band, but have black undertails. They are fast fliers and they swoop on insects while airborne. They have broad but pointed wings.

Red-rumped Swallows build quarter-sphere nests with a tunnel entrance lined with mud collected in their beaks, and lay 3-6 eggs. They normally nest under cliff overhangs in their mountain homes, but will readily adapt to buildings such as mosques and bridges.

They do not normally form large breeding colonies, but are gregarious outside the breeding season. Many hundreds can be seen at a time on the plains of India.