Articles from January 2014

Greater Coucal

Greater Coucal by Ck Leong

The Greater Coucal Centropus sinensis is a common bird of secondary and degraded forest.  It is not uncommon to have it fly across the road you are driving on and then disappearing into the foilage.  Its loud calls, a continuous series of booh can be heard in most places outside of the city areas.  Even though it is a cuckoo, it is not a brood parasite.  There are locals who believe that injured young birds are fed a variety of medicinal plants by their parents.  The well-again birds when preserved in brandy and other medicinal plants produce a concoction said to be helpful with damaged bones and joints.

Tiger Shrike

Tiger Shrike by Ck Leong


I find the Tiger Shrike Lanius tigrinus to be a lot more noisy at the end of the day than at other times.  This is when you can hear its loud chattering, perhaps advertising its claim to the territory.  On all the occasions that I have seen this bird, it has been solitary and has a preference for the lower canopy and shrubs.  A scarce winter visitor.

Black-headed Bunting

Black-headed Bunting by Ck Leong


I missed this bird when it came calling way back in 2009 on Manukan Island, off Kota Kinabalu.  This time it was much more accommodating,  making daily appearances at the football field near to Bohebukut village on Maratua Island during my visit there in November last year.  We saw a group of 3 individuals feeding on the overgrown grass, including this photographed bird which was blinded on one eye.  My lifer!