Autumn 2016 Migration – 6 Nov 2016
The 9th Singapore raptor watch was held on Sunday, 6 November 2016 and involved 72 participants – the largest number of participants thus far. It had been raining the past few days prior and we were lucky that it did not rain during the count, although we had overcast conditions almost the whole day. We counted 343 raptors representing 7 migrant species and 92 raptors of 6 resident species. A further 41 raptors could not be identified to species level. There were 8 raptor watch sites and the numbers counted at each site varied from a high of 164 to a low of 4.
Apart from the addition of Hindhede Quarry, the other seven sites were the same ones as previous years, thanks to all the site leaders for their faithful support!
Most of the migrant raptors were recorded between 9am to 1pm, with the numbers trailing off later in the afternoon. Oriental Honey Buzzards migrating across Tuas South from 10-11am and 12-1pm contributed to the two ‘mini-peaks’ in the graph below.
The Oriental Honey Buzzards (OHB) was the most numerous migrant raptor counted, with 289 birds. Being the most widespread, the OHB was recorded at all the 8 sites. Highest numbers for the OHB were at Tuas South Avenue 16 (139 birds), Japanese Garden (43 birds) and Kent Ridge Park (39 birds).
Usually, the Black Bazas would constitute the second highest count, but not this year. The second spot was claimed by the 38 Japanese Sparrowhawks, which was recorded at six out of 8 sites, with 16 birds at the Japanese Gardens alone. Only ten Black Bazas were counted at two sites – 9 at Lorong Halus Wetlands and 1 at Puaka Hill on Pulau Ubin.
Two Booted Eagles – one at Japanese Gardens and the other at Changi Business Park – were exceptional for this scarce passage migrant. Only two Peregrine Falcons and one Common Kestrel were counted, and all three birds were recorded at Tuas South. The one and only Chinese Sparrowhawk was recorded at Lorong Halus Wetlands.
For the resident species, the total count was 92 birds of 6 species, one more species than the year before – the addition being the Crested Goshawk. The count for the resident raptors comprised 43 Brahminy Kites, 29 White-bellied Sea Eagles, 11 Changeable Hawk Eagles, 4 Grey-headed Fish Eagles, 3 Black-winged Kites, and 2 Crested Goshawks. The decrease in the count for the Black-winged Kites was notable.
The figure below provides a snapshot of the number of raptors according to the three categories – migrant, un-identified & resident raptors, at the 8 sites.
Number of raptors
– 343 migrant raptors.
– 41 un-identified raptors.
– 92 resident raptors.
Number of species
13 species counted, including:
– 7 migrant species.
– 6 resident species.
A complete breakdown of the species counted at each site is shown in the table below:
Thanks to all the 72 wonderful birders, both leaders and participants, for spending their Sunday out in the open to count raptors. National Parks Board staff and NParks volunteers also participated. The following fantastic people led or assisted in the raptor count:
This report was compiled by TAN Gim Cheong
Please click on the link for a pdf version of the report 9th-singapore-raptor-watch-2016