Lee Kong Chian Natural History Museum

Icthyophaga ichthyaetus (Horsfield, 1821)

Species:I. ichthyaetus
Common Names:Grey-headed Fish Eagle
Status:Rare resident


The species ranges from India, Nepal, Sri Lanka, Myanmar, Indochina to Thailand, Peninsular Malaysia, Singapore, Sumatra, Java, Borneo, the Philippines and Sulawesi.


In Singapore, this species is mainly recorded in the Central Catchment Nature Reserve. It has also been recorded in Bukit Batok Nature Park, Bukit Timah Nature Reserve, Lentor Avenue, Poyan Reservoir, Rifle Range Road, Singapore Botanic Gardens, Sungei Buloh Wetland Reserve, Springleaf, Tanjong Murai and west coast.

Locality Map

General Biology

The Grey-headed Fish Eagle is threatened by competition with White-bellied Fish Eagle.

Its calls, describes as laughing screams, have been recorded and can be heard HERE.


The eagle hunts from a vantage poing by the water. Once it spots a fish, it lunges at it, grabbing it by its talons. Once caught it is brought back to its perch to be eaten.

Life Cycle

Breeding was first recorded on 12 January 1950, in the Central Catchment Nature Reserve, where nest building was observed. Breeding also recorded from October to December 1996 (OBC Bulletin 25). Nest building was recorded in October. Brooding was observed in January, February, October through December. Chicks seen in January and March. Fledgling seen in October.


The first record in Singapore was of an individual seen off Loyang on 15 November 1949 by F. G. H. Allen (Gibson-Hill, 1949).

Related Images

Related Activities/Events

Spot any errors? Have any questions? Something to contribute? Email us at dbsthh@nus.edu.sg!
Presented by

Sponsored by