30 June, 2010

Love Them To Bits

26th June 2010, Kemensah, Selangor.

This is how a very young Striped-throated Bulbul looks like.


This is how a sub adult Striped-throated Bulbul looks like., feeding on a little winged insect.


And this is how two adult Striped-throated Bulbuls look like, BAGGED!


There were two guys, claimed to be local villagers. This was what one guy said, rather incoherently (his face pale like he’d seen a ghost)  when I asked what’s the bird  in  the bag:

Saja suka-suka . Bang, nak buat camna, hobi kami. Kami suka burung”. Translation:          “ Just for fun. Brother, what can we do it’s our hobby. We LOVE birds”.

They were  after Black-crested bulbuls but  the menacing Striped-throated bulbul got caught in their snare. I was told that they would  assess their voices and the birds would be released if their voices were not of the necessary standard. Keeping song birds either for competition or for fun is still widespread  in the provinces and rural areas.

So how do you deal with  this kind of situation, let them be, turn a blind eye, or tell them to take up a different  hobby? I left them to shoot a flycatcher that was calling nearby. They disappeared with their snare  shortly after, before I could say what’s on my mind.


Their bird snare , locals call it ‘Jebak’ with a Black-crested Bulbul as the lure. It is hung on a pole 5 feet off the ground. The dragonfly-wing shaped flaps would spring shut the moment any bird landed on the inclined sticks: a work of art in itself.

Notes: All photos taken on the same day.


  1. The last time you chased them away with your 'silat/pendekar/kungfu' gesture.

  2. Very interesting. That snare is pretty amazing. I've been told that here in NYC's Chinatown, some people bring songbirds in cages to compete with their songs.

  3. So sad that this still goes on, when animals and habitats are disappearing at a huge rate. The world will lose a lot of it's wonderful birds!

  4. Just tell them what they did was wrong. Can't say much because we normally alone in the forest with expensive gears.

  5. Looks like our days to get photos of birds in Kemensah area may end sooner than expected.....