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Sunday, 27 October 2013

Chestnut-cheeked, finally

The chestnut-cheeked starling is a breeding bird in Russia and Japan and listed as a scarce winter migrant to Brunei.

On Borneo these starlings are known to congregate with asian glossy starlings, and most of the recent Borneo sightings seem to be of scattered birds hidden in larger flocks of their glossy cousins. Taking the cue of scrutinizing flocks of glossy starlings resulted in loads and loads of records in the last two years of... glossy starlings. Didn't see a single chestnut-cheeked in there.

Until last week that is when my patience was finally rewarded! A casual look at a group of asian glossies close to home revealed two cheeky chestnuts up in a bare tree.
Mixed starlings
The birds were fairly high up and I had to crop the pics a little to move the chestnut-cheeked to center stage. Both the birds are males.
Chestnut-cheeked starling (Sturnus philippensis)
Not a bad looking starling.
Chestnut-cheeked starling (Sturnus philippensis)
Glad to have finally "ticked" this species on my Borneo list!

Folkert, 17/10/2013.

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