Saturday, July 19, 2014

Jungle Babbler

The jungle babbler ( Turdoides striata ) is a widespread Indian resident. They mostly hunt or forage in groups and create such a racket that you really have to work hard not to spot them. The bird very closely resembles the slightly paler Yellow billed babbler, found in south India. The birds are Omnivorous and on this particular day I spotted them hunting caterpillars. Later in the evening, I also spotted a babbler chasing away a pied crested cuckoo, apparently the cuckoo has a history of parasatising the babblers nest !  

Friday, July 18, 2014

Spotted Dove

A wide spread resident on India, this Spotted Dove ( Stigmatopelia chinensis ) is a regular bird in our garden. I mostly see it foraging on the ground by continuously pecking food and I have seen it eat seeds and small worms. The birds chequered neck is quite prominent and allows one to easily distinguish it from other doves. 

Thursday, July 17, 2014

Rufous Treepie

A juvenile Rufous Treepie (Dendrocitta vagabunda) landed on a tree, besides which I was trying my hand at video shooting some birds. It was quite a delightful moment, because the bird is otherwise quite shy and quite difficult to photograph. Unlike this Juvenile, which has a brown hood, adults have a slaty grey hood. The bird is an Omnivore and will eat almost anything from fruits, insects, centipedes to eggs , and young fledglings of other birds and young ones of rodents.

Wednesday, July 16, 2014

Southern Coucal

When the rains stop for a while and the sun shines through the clouds, both the birds and their photographers get busy. The birds, dry and clean their feathers and photographers like me, use this lovely moment to get some nice moments. Like this Southern Coucal ( Centropus (sinensis) parroti ), which is generally a very shy birds and is quite alert to human presence. But when the sun shines through, all is forgotten and drying their feathers becomes a priority. It was quite a delight watching the bird and photographing it in various 'yogic' postures as it dried itself.  

Monday, July 14, 2014

Grey Breasted Prinia

This Grey breasted Prinia/ Franklin's Prinia (Prinia hodgsonii) can be heard in our home nearly every day. Its only occasionally do I get to see it- It mostly whistles from bushy trees or high up from the tree top. So yesterday, when the incessant rains abated a bit, I ventured out of the house with my gear and lo behold it was a delight to see this lovely Prinia, in the open for a change.  This bird, closely resembles the Ashy prinia sometimes. I generally use the orange-buff underparts of the Ashy prinia to quickly differentiate the two. 

Monday, July 7, 2014

Rose Ringed Parakeet

We make it a practice not to completely harvest our fruits and vegetables, a large portion is left for our backyard wildlife. The rose ringed parakeets (Psittacula krameri) are one such beneficiaries of this practice. They visit us every monsoon and the last year they were attracted to our corn,  This year they have taken a liking for the overgrown drumsticks. Rapid fliers and shrill voiced, they add some more green to the already lush green landscape. 

Saturday, July 5, 2014

Purple-rumped Sunbird

One wild plant in our garden , sustains four species of sunbirds. In my previous posts I had featured two of them, the Vigours's and the Lotens sunbirds. Today its the turn of the Purple-rumped Sunbird ( Leptocoma zeylonica). The fourth one Purple sunbird, is an occasional visitor and I hope he gives us an visit soon. Unlike the previously featured sunbirds, I have not seen the purple-rumped sunbird, hover on flowers for nectar, it prefers the less energy consuming method of perching and sipping on nectar. The bird featured above is the male, the female has greyish-white throat, yellow breast , olive rump , whitish flanks and brown wing panel.

Thursday, July 3, 2014

Loten's Sunbird

It was raining today ( what a relief!) after 12 days of sunshine. As a nature photographer, the tendency for me is to sit back and enjoy the rains. For a change today, I decided to brave the rains and went about photographing sunbirds. Despite the overcast sky, the light was just about enough to get a bit of action. The birds did not disappoint, they braved the heavy showers as they went about drinking nectar from their favourite plants. Today I feature the Lotens Sunbird (Cimmyris lotenia ), a resident of Southern India, the bird has a lovely metallic luster. It rarely hovers to drink, preferring to perch on a branch and drink nectar- today though it seemed to be in a good mood. 

Tuesday, July 1, 2014

Vigors's Sunbird -Female

A few weeks ago, I had done a post on a male Vigors's Sunbird . Today, it's the turn of the less flamboyant but equally graceful female Vigors's Sunbird ( Aethopyga (siparaja) vigorsii ). These sunbirds, visit our garden everyday and it is a great pleasure to see an increase in their number in recent days. This is just my observation, but I feel that the female hovers much lesser than the male and prefers to have its dose of nectar quietly perched. The male, on the other hand, as most male birds are is quite showy and enjoys giving quite a display as it hovers to feed on the flowers.