Tuesday, January 12, 2010


Watching elegant Blue-throated bee eaters flying in the azure sky and with the afternoon zephyr blowing so gently, is just like watching poetry in motion.

I am always amazed and fascinated by these birds, especially when they perch on telephone lines and watch for the flying bees passing by. The minute they see bees flying by, they will immediately took to the air and give them a chase.

Most often I see them flying back to the telephone line with bees and sometimes dragonflies in their sharp beak.

Watching them hunting bees brings back memories of my childhood where I used to dig up their nests looking for their eggs.

Strangely, and don't ask me why, they themselves are not edible but their eggs are ok (just like turtles).

They normally dig holes just enough for them to fly through deep inside bris soil to lay eggs and bring up chicks.

They were very agitated, flying here and there, sometimes swooping down at our heads as we were robbing their nests.

We also were very fond of catching them by using a loop of string placed at the entrance of their nest. They would get trapped as soon as they flew away from the nest.

When caught, we tied the leg and then let it go, flying high into the blue sky. After once or twice the string broke and off it went flying free.


Martin Lee said...

Remember as kids a few of my friends got some little young birds from the hole of a sand bank left heaped up by tin mine company. We found and caught them but did not know what to feed them and we probably thought they belong to the kingfishers family. Now I think of the incident, they should be the youngs from blue throated bee eaters, their tails have a slightly longer protruding and dangling feather, which is quite distinct even seen from far. Now I hardly see any of these birds!

azahar said...

I think so, but both kingfishers and bee eaters do make their nest in sandbanks.

In Brazil, Macaws make their nest in sandbanks too.

I remember a few years back when I was busy preparing a paper for my PTK5 (competency exam). As I sat by the window of Veterinary Management Institute Cheras, I saw a Kingfisher busy bringing in food items such as lizards to her chicks in the nest in the earthbank....

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