Through the persistence of WQ and L, I was roped in to join in the yearly Bird Race organised by the Nature Society. This year, the race will be conducted through the Rail Corridor and its adjoining forests and parks.
I had set my alarm to PM instead of AM, and as a result, I had to waste $20 of cab fare to fly down to Dairy Farm Nature Park to meet my friends and was late for registration. =.=’’
And off we go! Our team, the nOObs, was (obviously) registered as a novice team and we first headed down the Dairy Farm trail to the Singapore Quarry.
Along the way, we heard a lot of noisy chatter in the forest so we went in to find a bunch of Asian Glossy Starlings, which were pretty much found everywhere here.
However, we were rewarded with beautiful rays of sun flecks penetrating through the forest canopy~ so nice…
This was my first time in Dairy Farm Nature Park, and I get to admire this platform facing the Quarry, where we noted quite a few birds, some with the help of the expert teams and their awesome scopes.
Along the way, we found many large nests on Albizia trees and this reminds me of Dr Ho Hua Chew’s talk of the importance of these trees for the nesting of large raptors.
Seems like bees also have a liking for this tree. WQ found this bee hive high up on another Albizia.
We headed towards the Rail Corridor and were rewarded by a small flock of Scaly-breasted Munias flying among the tall grasses.
I find this stretch of the corridor a pleasant place to walk by, as there was a small stream flowing beside the trail, and a lot of dragonflies as a result.
The highlight of the day for me was not a bird, but rather a Common Bluebottle butterfly puddling around us. Another check in my butterfly list!
Some other fellow birders on a bridge at a distance.
We heard some loud crashes at one point of the trail and saw a changeable hawk eagle (kindly ID-ed by HC) fighting with some long-tailed macaques.
SD had previously witnessed, photographed, and subsequently published his encounter of this eagle catching a banded leaf monkey in Panti (Link), so perhaps this eagle was indeed attempting to subdue a macaque. We watched for awhile but the commotion subsided without us knowing whether the eagle was really successful.
It was noon when we reached Bukit Batok Nature Park, and the place seemed practically devoid of any bird calls. Fortunately, we were still able see to this Asian Paradise Fly Catcher,
and the loveable White Crested Laughing Thrush.
Our last stop was at Kent Ridge Park where we recorded a few more species, ending up with 28 species in all~
While I am not a bird fanatic, I did enjoyed myself thoroughly today, especially because of the good company. Also learnt quite a number of new birds! :)