It was time to pay the Little Terns at Kallang Place a visit. They should be in their breeding season right about now. Instead of seeing a number of courting birds in their breeding plumage, only a pair was spotted on the stretch of PVC pipes.
The reason for low numbers became apparent. The pair was very territorial and would chase away all other terns away. However, their aggressiveness also made it easier to set the camera up, study their behavior, and then wait to catch the sequence of behavior.
These birds like kingfishers tend to have a higher success rate at catching fish when there is bright sunlight. During that morning the sky was overcast and the male had less success. In the afternoon, when there was bright sunlight his hit rate jumped dramatically.
On the other hand, the female rarely left her PVC perch. She just sat pretty and waited to be fed. At times she seemed to hackle her mate, when he came to rest beside her, as though showing her displeasure that he wasn’t fishing.
Here's a feed sequence that ends with the male flying off to hunt again.
Our clean waterways have also encouraged life to return to the river. Not only were there Little Terns at the stretch of river. There were Pacific Swallows, Little Herons and even a Juvenile Purple Heron all busy catching their meals.
Obviously, the fish have also returned as many people were seen casting fishing lines into the river. Two men were even laying out a long line of drift/gill nets down river at the Upper Boon Keng Road side.