‘Lanyu’ Scops-Owl Rusty Laughingthrush
More Birds in Taiwan
More Birds in TaiwanEurasian Teal
Dicaeum concolor uchidai
The Plain Flowerpecker is a tiny (8 cm), short-tailed bird with a thick, sharp, down-curved bill. The head, back and rump are a deep olive green, the wing and tail feathers dark with olive edging. The underparts are pale grayish, becoming creamy yellowish on the central belly. The iris is brown, the bill is black and the feet are dark blue-gray. The sexes are alike. The Taiwan race has a shorter tail than the mainland race and is a deeper olive colour, paler on the rump and upper tail-coverts.
Like other flowerpeckers, the Plain Flowerpecker feeds on tiny insects, nectar and small fruits which it finds in the tree-tops. These birds are particularly associated with the berries of mistletoes, Loranthus, and are important in dispersing the seeds of these plants. They usually travel in pairs or small flocks, calling a staccato, penetrating “tzik”. Their song has been described as a repeated “tzierrr”.
The nest is a neat purse-like structure made of leaves and grass fibres matted together with spider silk, and suspended from a leafy twig. Usually two or three eggs are laid.
In Taiwan the Plain Flowerpecker is a common to uncommon resident year-round in hill forest, secondary growth and cultivated areas, especially where mistletoe is abundant.
References: A Field Guide to the Birds of China (Mackinnon and Phillipps); N. J. Collar, “Endemic subspecies of Taiwan birds—first impressions”, in Birding ASIA, Number 2, December 2004; 100 Common Birds of Taiwan (Wild Bird Society of Taipei)