Category Archives: Resident Birds

Cattle Egret in non breeding plumage

Cattle Egret

Cattle Egret

(Bubulcus ibis)

Size (48-52 cm): It is the smallest of all the Egrets found in India

Area: Most of India except the Himalayas

Habitat: Lakes, village ponds, cultivations, river-banks

Description: Non-Breeding birds are white all over and the iris, lores and the bill are yellow. The legs are also yellow but are much paler than the bill.

Cattle Egret in non breeding plumage
Cattle Egret in non breeding plumage

Breeding adults develop buffy-orange plumes over their head, neck, throat and the lower back. The bill and legs also develop a reddish-orange hue.

Cattle Egret in breeding plumage

It is a very common and very friendly bird, which is good for those who want to photograph it. If you approach it slowly without much movement, it won’t bother you coming too close.

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Cattle Egrets are named so because they are often found near cattle herds, sitting on the backs of cows and buffaloes. They are one of the best friends of the cattle, they eat insects and parasites that stick to the cattle’s body, thus keeping them clean and also safe from infections. If you want to find them, the best place I would suggest would be a paddy cultivation where there is standing water.

Food: Insects, frogs, snails, grasshoppers and even lizards.

IUCN status: LC – Least Concern

~Arjun Basandrai

Birder’s Day Out – Birding at Pong Lake

Birder’s Day Out – Birding at Pong Lake

It was on 29th December, 2019 that I, finally, got the chance to spend a Day Out Birding at one of my Favourite Birding Locations – Pong Lake. I first visited this place in 2015 and till then it has remained in my ‘Favourites List’.

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Wade in the Water – Birding at Phillaur – Part 6

Wade in the Water – Birding at Phillaur – Part 6

Local birding is much more exciting to me compared to going to far off places to witness a complete new set of wildlife. So, I began this season’s birding adventures by visiting the place that I consider as ‘One of the Finest Spots for Birding around Phillaur’ – Sutlej.

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Indian Cormorant

Indian Cormorant

(Phalacrocorax fuscicollis)

Size(60-63cm): It is a large Cormorant larger than the Little Cormorant but smaller than the Great Cormorant.

Area: Widespread over much of the region except the North and North-West.

Habitat: Several Fresh Water and Salt Water Bodies.

My two words: This specific Cormorant is found only in India, Thailand, Cambodia and Myanmar.

This Cormorant has a bronze brown-black plumage. The Breeding Plumage is metallic black with distinctive short white-tufts. The non-breeding plumage is browner and the bird develops a yellow patch of bare skin around the throat.

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Little Cormorant

Little Cormorant

(Microcarbo niger)

Size(48-52cm): As the name suggests, it is the smallest Cormorant that can be found in India.

Area: Widespread resident over much of the region except the Trans-Himalayas

Habitat: Lakes, ponds, river and estuaries. Basically any water body.

My two words: A very common sighting across much of India. Can be easily spotted around any water source where there is enough to fish for and live.

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