Oriental Pratincole

Scientific Name: Glareola maldivarum

Malay Name: Kedidi-Padang Biasa

Chinese Name: 普通燕鸻

Range: Breeds in Indochina, East Asia, northern Philippines and some sites around India and Sri Lanka. Winters in Southeast Asia to Australia.

Taxonomy: Monotypic.

Size: 23-24 cm

Identification: A medium-sized greyish bird with very distinct facial and throat markings. It's shape is somewhat similar to a tern, both when perches and in flight with its long, slender and pointed wings. Underwings coverts are bright red. The similar and very rare Small Pratincole is much more compact in shape, lacks facial markings and has black underwing coverts.

Similar looking species: Small Pratincole

Habitat: Freshwater marshes, open country, coastal lagoons

Behaviour/Ecology: Often observed migrating in the day during October to November in flocks exceeding 100 birds. Single birds occasionally found in freshwater puddles.

Local Status: Uncommon migrant

Conservation Status: Least Concern (BirdLife International 2016)

Location: Throughout Singapore during the migratory season, especially at known raptor watching sites. Sometimes seen at freshwater puddles, typically temporary ones that form at construction sites or grassfields in places like Seletar and Jurong.

Migrant bar chart (see more bar charts):

Oriental Pratincole Glareola maldivarum
Estimated average number of individuals by week based on eBird data, Jul 2013 to Jun 2023
Peak week Oct 22-Oct 28
Early date 15 Sep 1988
Late date 12 May 2018
The biggest numbers are encountered in Oct, when large flocks pass through at raptor migration hotspots.


BirdLife International. (2016). Glareola maldivarum. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2016. https://dx.doi.org/10.2305/IUCN.UK.2016-3.RLTS.T22694132A93440161.en. Accessed on 1 January 2023

Robson, C. (2014). Field guide to the birds of South-East Asia (Second Edition). Bloomsbury Publishing, London.

To top