Kukila Volume 22 is published


Volume 22 begins with an article concerning the distribution of introduced mynas around Kuching, Sarawak, in Malaysian Borneo. Nurul Razak and colleagues found that the Common Myna was widely distributed in Kuching and suburbs of nearby Kota Samarahan, whereas the Javan Myna was confined to metropolitan Kuching. Though these invasive species are not yet considered pests in Sarawak, as they are in Singapore, the authors argue that their populations should be monitored, and recommend actions to reduce their food supply, of which human refuse is prominent.

The second article reports on new and significant bird records from the island of Bintan, the largest in the Riau Archipelago, just south of Singapore. Chan and Chan (2019) conducted surveys around the resorts and golf courses in the island’s north, and recorded eight new species for the island, bringing its total known avifauna up to 189 species. All of the newly-recorded species are widespread Asian birds, and it is concerning that no woodpeckers were detected. The authors recommended that Bintan Resorts and local government agencies be more proactive in restoring forest habitat, in order to properly fulfil Bintan’s ambition to be an “eco-island”. 

In the third article, Richard and Carol Donaghey describe and provide photographs of the nest and egg of the New Guinea-endemic Green-backed Robin for the first time. This species occurs mainly in the mountains of western (Indonesian) New Guinea. The authors’ observations and previous unpublished data suggest that, like its eastern counterpart, the White-eyed Robin, the Green-backed Robin lays one egg only, reflecting a general trend for New Guinea passerines to lay smaller clutches than birds in other tropical regions. They also describe and present sonograms of the common vocalisations, and discuss their function.

The fourth item in KUKILA 22 is an inventory of Recent Literature (2016-2018) concerning Indonesian birds, compiled by Bas van Balen, Imam Taufiqurrahman, Colin Trainor & Muhammad Iqbal. This compilation provides full citations for no fewer than 306 journal articles (213 in English and 93 in Indonesian), 31 books or book chapters (24 in Indonesian), 8 conference proceedings papers, and two Masters theses.

The previous Recent Literature, compiled by the same team in 2016 (KUKILA 19), listed 165 journal articles (either language), 13 books or book chapters, 12 conference proceedings papers, and 11 Masters or PhD theses. Comparing the number of journal articles for the two periods (three and two years, respectively) suggests there has been an increase of 26% in the annual publication rate, which is encouraging.