Saturday, May 14, 2011

Lowland White Eye

Lowland White Eye by Tonji Ramos

The Lowland White-eye (Zosterops meyeni) is a bird that is more easily heard than seen. Lowland White-eyes are small, yellow birds that fly from treetop to treetop in flocks twittering all the while. Although they make a lot of noise, they can be easy to miss because they are so small and quick. They also usually stay at the tops of tall trees and it takes a lot of neck straining to get a good look at them.

    There is a story about a photographer who was at the American Cemetery late one afternoon taking landscape pictures. He noticed a lot twittering sounds coming from one of the trees. He walked up to the tree to investigate the sounds. As he got near the tree, everything went silent. He went back to his photography. Then the twittering started up again only to fall silent as soon as he approached the tree where the sounds were coming from. This went on several times. The photographer began to get spooked. Then, just as he was about to think that the trees were haunted by invisible beings, a birdwatcher showed up and pointed out the Lowland White-eyes twittering in the treetops!

    Lowland White-eyes are only about 4 inches long. They have yellowish olive green upperparts, white bellies, and yellow forehead, throat, and under tail. Their most distinctive feature is the white ring around the eye that gives the bird its name.  The white ring around its eye distinguishes it from other small birds found in the village.

    Lowland White-eyes can be found in the tall trees along Country Club Drive, in the portion near the golf course. They are also found in Narra Park and the parking lot in front of La Salle where the trees are not so tall.  They eat insects, spiders, nectar, and berries.
Lowland White Eye on an African Tulip Tree

    Happy Birding!

You can see more photos of Lowland White Eyes in my website

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