Chickenosaurus? no. Chicken ancestor? yes.

New residents in Singapore might be surprised to hear in the wee hours of the morning, the call of a rooster. After all, Singapore is a modern city but it is also the garden city, so what’s surprising about hearing roosters?

Well, you’d be surprised: these are not but male Red Junglefowls, they are free and are one of the many protected species of Singapore.

Head image: Male Red Junglefowl, created at the Singapore Botanic Garden with Canon EOS 7D Mark II and Canon EF 500mm f/4L IS. ISO 800, 1/200s, f/5, +1/3 EV, Evaluative metering.

When visiting the Singapore Botanic Gardens early in the morning it is possible to hear and observe male and female Red Junglefowls, their male call is very similar to one’s of the domestic chicken. Not surprisingly, the domestic chicken is a descendant of the Red Junglefowl (apparently with some hybridisation with the Grey Junglefowl).

Male Red Junglefowl, created at the Singapore Botanic Garden with Canon EOS 7D Mark II and Canon EF 500mm f/4L IS. ISO 2500, 1/200s, f/5.6, +1/3 EV, Evaluative metering.

Male Red Junglefowl, created at the Singapore Botanic Garden with Canon EOS 7D Mark II and Canon EF 500mm f/4L IS. ISO 2500, 1/200s, f/5.6, +1/3 EV, Evaluative metering.

If like me you tend to dismiss the chicken as a convenient food source, it is remarkable to discover re-discover that this bird is so beautiful. Even the females, though not as colourful  — for the obvious requirements of being a responsible mother — as the males, have very delicate plumage despite the limited palette they can do with.

Female Red Junglefowl, created at the Singapore Botanic Garden with Canon EOS 7D Mark II and Canon EF 500mm f/4L IS. ISO 3200, 1/250s, f/5.6, +1/3 EV, Evaluative metering.

Female Red Junglefowl, created at the Singapore Botanic Garden with Canon EOS 7D Mark II and Canon EF 500mm f/4L IS. ISO 3200, 1/250s, f/5.6, +1/3 EV, Evaluative metering.

Their behaviour is very similar to our domestic chicken, spending most of the day foraging for food in the ground.

Male Red Junglefowl, created at the Singapore Botanic Garden with Canon EOS 7D Mark II and Canon EF 500mm f/4L IS. ISO 3200, 1/250s, f/5.6, +1/3 EV, Evaluative metering.

Male Red Junglefowl, created at the Singapore Botanic Garden with Canon EOS 7D Mark II and Canon EF 500mm f/4L IS. ISO 3200, 1/250s, f/5.6, +1/3 EV, Evaluative metering.

But to a major difference: they can fly! Unfortunately I didn’t manage to get a picture of a “flying chicken” this time, that’ll be for another time.

Male Red Junglefowl, created at the Singapore Botanic Garden with Canon EOS 7D Mark II and Canon EF 500mm f/4L IS. ISO 3200, 1/250s, f/5.6, +1/3 EV, Evaluative metering.

Male Red Junglefowl, created at the Singapore Botanic Garden with Canon EOS 7D Mark II and Canon EF 500mm f/4L IS. ISO 3200, 1/250s, f/5.6, +1/3 EV, Evaluative metering.

Chickenosaurus? no. Chicken ancestor? yes.Christian C. Berclaz
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7 comments on "Chickenosaurus? no. Chicken ancestor? yes."

  1. Gerry Danen

    Love your blog, Christian. (Y)

  2. Masami Yoshimura

    Those Jungle Fowls are really beautiful. Only early in the morning? So they are not used to people.. This is awesome.. and great you found them..

    So, sorry, Christian, belated happy new year and best wishes to you for the 2016. Looking forward to more great news and info. from you this year too! Thank you for sharing your articles, always very informative and interesting topics. =D

  3. Christian C. Berclaz

    Thank you very much for your kind words Masami -san and belated happy new year to you too! I’ve seen them mostly active in the morning especially hearing many males calling each other. But those visible in the Botanic Gardens are fairly tame and used to people, similar to rock pigeons or mynas.

    I can’t say that I have found them I was merely looking at them for once 🙂 I think that when something become too usual many of us tend to stop looking at it. So next I should try the rock pigeon 🙂

    Greetings from Singapore!

  4. Masami Yoshimura

    Christian, wanted to share this post at the gallery, but couldn’t .. without a posted photo, the FB does not allow to share.. So I copied and pasted your post. Cannot tag you either.

    https://www.facebook.com/BirdersJapanGallery/

  5. Christian C. Berclaz

    Thank you! 😊 very grateful that you like it

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