June 2008 — Return of the Blue-Winged Pitta

BY ANGELA HIJJAS

The call of the blue-winged pitta can be heard all over the garden, and occasionally we catch the flash of its brilliant wings in the Taman Sari. Jesmi the gardener discovered their nest in an abandoned woodpile in the garden, and watched the birds fly in and out and issue alarm calls from a perch in a nearby tree.

The nest is hidden in thick growth on a pile of wood cuttings.

The nest is dug into the mound, supported with sticks and lined with fibers.

This is the second year that this species has been spotted at Rimbun Dahan. Last year it was only detected towards the end of its stay, when it was often seen hunting for worms in the Taman Sari which were carried off to its unseen nest — see Nature Notes August 2007.