a publication of Sungei Buloh Nature Park

Vol 5 No 2
Aug 98

Copper-throated Sunbird's Nesting Habitat

Flowers of the Swamp

Ubin Lifestyle

Bird Sightings (Mar-May 98)

Launch of
"A Guide to Sungei Buloh"

Commonwealth Regional Youth Seminar

at Sungei Buloh

Earth Day 98

Mangrove Seedling Programme

Swarming to the Swamp: Sivasothi's introduction to mangroves
  Journal of a Nature Warden
Copper-throated Sunbird's

Nesting Habitat

The departure of the migratory birds in March does not mean a lull in activities at the Sungei Buloh Nature Park. From April to August, many of our resident birds are busy setting up their own family. Ramakrishnan keeps them under his watchful eyes as he introduces the nesting habitat of one of the Park's most common bird, the Copper-throated Sunbird.

The lively Copper throated Sunbird has never failed to delight many of our Park visitors. Especially the pair that flies in and out of the young mangrove trees (Avecennia alba) found in front of the Main Hide. However, what they may not be aware of is the nest that is lying right under their nose amidst the trees. It is so close yet so far for all, except the very observant.

I have been observing this particular pair of Copper-throated Sunbird for almost three years now. They have been breeding successfully using the same nest at the same site all these while. Most of the sunbirds that I have observed tend to build new nests for each breeding season. This is essential as the nests undergo wear and tear from the exposure to the natural elements.

These two sunbirds, on the other hand, have every reason to rejoice. They have selected a well-protected home for their offspring. The roof of the Main Observation Hide protects the nest from the harsh weather conditions and the thick mangrove patch deters any potential predators. With each breeding season, the pair only need to do minor "repairs", or rather, "reinforcements" to the nest. They have indeed made a wise decision in choosing this site to procreate!

The Copper-throated Sunbird breeds during the months of April to August every year. The female uses fine twigs and leaves to construct the nest while the male acts as an escort accompanying the female on her collection rounds to source for nesting materials. The nest is built very much like a pear with a hole on the top as the entrance. The Copper-throated Sunbird usually constructs its nest on young mangrove trees two to six feet above the ground facing the inner side of a pond or the sea.

Do look out for these lively little creatures on your next visit to the Park.

14 May 1998.
© Sungei Buloh Nature Park