@ Telok Blangah Hill Park (24 May 2012)
A friend showed me some blurry photos that she recently took of a flock of birds during one of her walks at this park. That got be excited as they looked like the Yellow-vented Bulbul yet not exactly like them. I had to go see them asap, which I did the very next day.
Having a "guide" saved me time and effort on locating these birds but I needn't have worried too much as a number of them were feeding on the ground near the car park and being larger than the bulbul wasn't that hard to spot. Plus, their loud "laughing" calls was very easily heard. It was about 5 p.m.
They were the White-crested Laughingthrush (Garrulax leucolophus), whose natural habitat range from the Himalayas to Indochina. So these are not native birds, probably introduced here or are escapees. I was again happy, as this is another lifer.
The hair-do and the dark mascara were what caught my eye.
Usually, we birders would keep a respectful distance so as not to scare the birds away with our presence. But my friend said we could walk closer as these birds don't seem to mind humans at all. And it was true. On a couple of occasions, while I squatted to take photos of the birds who were feeding on the ground, a couple of playful juveniles actually came as close as half a metre from me and once even hopped around me. I was delirious with joy for this had never happened to me ever. I put this down to the people here who do not threaten bird life.
The young ones were observed grooming each other, making soft calling noises, while the adults kept to themselves. Three of the adult birds were seen drinking out of a nut shell in the shrubbery. They would tilt their heads to swallow the liquid.
Once in a while, the crown feathers would be raised and that made them really handsome.
Enjoy the photos.
|A juvenile that came within touching distance|
|The adult bird has stronger brown colours|