Showing posts with label Bird Photography. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Bird Photography. Show all posts

Indian (Blue) Peafowl (Peacock) Pictures and Detail (The most beautiful big Bird I ever saw)

Peacock, Peafowl, Feathers,
Peacock and Its Feathers

Peacock, Peafowl
Indian Blue Peacock

Indian (Blue) Peafowl Peacock Pictures and Detail (Click to Tweet)

I spent last few days in the search of Peacocks in Kandi Forest of Punjab near Ropar Town. I got the chance to see two dozen of these birds in this forest; however, they disappear in a few seconds so I got only a few pictures of peafowl.


The ears of Peacock are so sharp that they are able to hear the click of a camera from a distance. The best thing about Peacocks is their beautiful voice which makes you stress free.

[Update 14-4-2015  The other interesting thing about Peacock is to see it with a full spread of feathers. When they do so, then they look like dancing in heavenly love. Fortunately, I also got a chance to capture the dance of Peacock with a full spread of its wings. In the three pictures below, you can see yourself how beautiful a Peacock looks at this point.

Peacock, Full Spread of Wings, Wings, Feathers,
Peacock with Full spread of Feathers
Feathers, Backside, Peacock
Backside of Peacock in Full Spread of Feathers

Side view, full spread, Peacocks, Feathers,
Side View of Full Spread of Feathers of Peacock

There are two species of Peafowl, one is blue and other is green. In India, we find Blue Peacocks and in Burms (Mynmar) we find the green Peacock.

Peacock, Peafowl, Bush
Peacock on the Bush
 When you see a peacock for the first time, then the first word which comes out of your mouth is what a beautiful big bird. It appears that someone has painted this bird so beautifully. I found very peaceful chasing these birds.

[Update - 14-4-2015 Can Peacock Fly?- The most interesting thing is to see the Peacock flying. Though, Peacock can't fly long distance and high enough, So usually they have short flights and they choose a higher ground to jump so that they can cross a long distance, I have seen a Peacock jumping from 70 feet height to cover almost double distance in a single flight. Due to their large wing size, we hear a strong noise when they fly near us. However, they are not long distance and high flyers like the other birds.   Below you can see three pictures showing the flight of Peacocks. These pictures are taken from the top as I was standing on top of a hill.]

Peacock, Flying,
Peacock Flying
Peacock, Flight
Flight of Peacock

Peacock, Flying
Peocock Flying

I am seeing the Indian (Blue) Peacocks from the childhood because these birds were very common in the villages of Punjab and we could notice them in the fields. However, due to excess use of pesticides and hunting, the numbers of Peacocks decreased drastically and they started disappearing.

However, thanks to ban on killing Peafowls, we are again seeing a revival of their population.

Peacock, Hill Top
Peacock on the Hill Top
The male Peafowl is called Peacocks and while female Peafowl is called Peahen. The male Peafowl has beautiful and colorful wings, which are absent in female Peafowls, The tail of the Peacock is known as Train.

The good things about Peafowls is that they cling a hill of 400 feet in few seconds only and they are very good at hiding themselves behind the small trees and bushes. Peafowl doesn't have a good flight, but they can fly for short distances if feel threatened.
Face of Peafowl

The diet of Peafowls includes a variety of things like plants, grass, seeds, insects, manuals. In the morning, it is nice to hear their loud calls in the morning time; though, we can hear these calls at any time.

Sometimes when you follow Peacocks in the jungle, then you get the chance to see such pictures where a Peafowl is standing on Tree branch like you see in the picture below.

Peacock, Tree,
Peacock on Tree

Peafowl, Peacock, Tree Branch,
Peafowl on the Tree Branch

Sometimes, we also get a chance to see Peacocks fighting for a Peahen. In the picture below, you can see a three Peacocks and one Peahen. Two Peacocks look fighting with each other.

Peacocks, Fight
Peacocks Fight 

Threat to Peafowls (Peacocks) 

Few years, It was common to read such news in the media "20 Peacocks found dead", "Indians can no longer be proud as a peacock", "Peacocks poisoned", "Peafowls (Peacocks) on the brink of extinction".

During my childhood, it was very common to see Peafowls (Peacocks) in rural area of most of India; however, as I grew, I noticed a sharp decrease in the numbers of Peacocks. Earlier in state of Punjab in India, you can commonly see Peacocks sitting silently in fields or on the rooftop.

However, due to poaching, poisoning and indiscriminate use of pesticides, the number of Peafowls decreased sharply and it's become very uncommon to see these beautiful birds. In 1991 population counting done by WWF India for Peafowls (Peacocks), it was found that Peafowls population has become half after the independence of India.

Killing Peacocks is a non-bailable offense in India and any person caught killing Peacocks can get three years of imprisonment and Rs 10000 fine. However, still these birds were hunted down due because of the huge demand of their feathers and fat.

The increased use of pesticides in fields also caused death of Peacocks because use of some of pesticides become very harmful for these birds.

However, now we are seeing some revival and there is a increase in population of Peafowls in many parts of India; though, they are still under threat and need protection. I request everyone to support Peacocks by educating others about security of Peacocks.

Peafowls (Peacocks) are great ground birds because we mostly find them on the ground moving here and there or even climbing hills because of their strong feet. Being sensitive to the slightest movement of unknown voice or things, they can fly away immediately creating a loud noise of wings.

I hope to capture more of their pictures in the future because I have fallen in love with Peafowl (Peacock) calls and sweet nature of hiding. 

The Common (Indian) Myna Pictures and Detail (Acridotheres tristis)

Common Myna, Indian Myna, Myna,
A Pair of a Common Myna 

The Common (Indian) Myna Pictures and Detail (Acridotheres tristis)

As the name suggests, this bird is very common in India and it is one of the most invasive birds in the present world. Common Myna is one such bird which makes her presence felt to you by coming very close to humans. 

In India, we can find this bird in big number with other species and subspecies of it. Common or Indian Myna is one bird about which maximum number of people must have knowledge that they exist because they are everywhere and they have best adapted themselves to the urban lifestyle. 

Common Myna, Close Up
Close up Common Myna

The scientific name of these birds is Acridotheres Tristis and they belong to the Sturnidae family of birds. Common Myna is native birds of Asia; however, now this bird is found in most parts of the world and in Australia, it is declared a threat to biodiversity.

The main food of common myna is insects, human waste, seeds, grains, small reptiles, small mammals and fruits. With so long list of food, Common myna can survive anywhere, therefore, we find them now everywhere.

In my home, they come very often to take some share from the dog food, sometimes, when the dog doesn't eat his food, then this time is like a party for common Myna.

Common Myna, Dog Food,
Common Myna Looking for Dog Food

We can find this bird alone, in pairs, in groups or in mixed groups. It is common to see them walking to go close to food or to catch insects. Being declared an invasive species, its population is to decrease in some countries like Singapore.

Common Myna,
Close Up Two Common Myna
These birds are called flying rats in Australia because of their habits similar to rats. Though, they are helpful bids like crows and clean all human waste.

Some people also put common Myna in cages because of its sweet voice and speaking ability.

Common Myna
Common Myna
Sometimes, Common (Indian) Myna poses threat to other birds by displacing them from their natives nest. These birds fit best on the example of survival of the fittest.

All pics by Arvind Katoch

The Blue Whistling Thrush Pictures and Detail (Myophonus caeruleus)

Blue Whistling Thrush,
Blue Whistling Thrush

The Blue Whistling Thrush Pictures and Detail (Myophonus caeruleus)

When I captured the above pic of Blue Whistling thrush at that time, I had no idea about this bird. From a distance, this bird looks like small crow and you hardly notice small white dots. However, when I saw this picture on my computer then it becomes clear that it is a different bird. 

After some research, I came to know that it is called Blue Whistling Thrush which is a Himalayan and Asian Bird. This bird is found in a big geographical location from Afghanistan to Vietnam. This is a mountain bird because mostly found near the mountains. I captured these pictures in a village near Baijnath in Himachal Pradesh. 

Blue Whistling Thrush
Blue Whistling Thrush
In the above two pictures, you can see some insect in the beak of Blue Whistling Thrush. These birds feed on insects, fruits, nuts, snails and crabs. 

Blue Whistling Thrush got its name because of its dark blue color and its ability to whistle like humans. The scientific name of this bird is Myophonus caeruleus. In different locations, we can find some change it is color and size. We can also find many subspecies of this bird. 

Blue Whistling Thrush, Back
Blue Whistling Thrush 

The best way to identify this bird is to spot white dots on the upper part of the body. This bird is found either alone or in pairs; though, I spotted it alone most of the times. 

I found this bird very hard working because I always found in looking for food except in one case where I found him sitting on a tree branch in the above picture. 

Blue Whistling Thrush, Nut, Beak
Blue Whistling Thrush with Nut in Beak
In the above picture, you can see a Blue Whistling Thrush with a nut in his beak. 

Both the sexes of Blue Whistling Thrush are alike, though males are slightly bigger in size. They show altitudinal migration and move up hills in summers and descend down in winters. 

Blue Whistling Thrush
Blue Whistling Thrush
I enjoyed taking pictures of Blue Whistling Thrush; however, it is shy birds and it becomes difficult to find it. On my next visit to Himachal Pradesh, I hope to get more of his pictures. 

All pics by Arvind Katoch

The Grey (Himalayan) Treepie Pictures and Detail (Dendrocitta formosae)

Grey Treepie, Himalayan Treepie
The Grey (Himalayan) Treepie

The Grey (Himalayan) Treepie Pictures and Detail (Dendrocitta formosae)

This is second Treepie whom I captured through my camera. Earlier it was Rufous Treepiea Specie of Treepie from the plains. In India, we can find many geographically different regions; therefore, we see differences in birds too.

The Himalayan ranges cross through the Northern and Eastern part of India; therefore, we find here many Himalayan birds. Grey Treepie is one of such bird which is also known as Himalayan Treepie. Unlike Rufous Treepie, these birds don't have a melodious voice and they look silent in nature.

Grey Treepie, Back
Grey Treepie from Back

Like Rufous Treepie, Grey Treepie is also a bird of the crow family. These birds are found in the all geographical areas from foothills to higher peaks of Himalaya. Grey Treepie is basically an Asian Treepie.

These birds are found from Northern India to Taiwan, including countries like China, Nepal, Myanmar.  There are also some subspecies of Grey Treepie and we can find slight variations in its size and color from place to place.

Grey Treepie, Top
Grey Treepie on Tree Top

It is common to find Grey Treepie on the Tree Tops or in the fields in search of insects.

Grey Treepie, Fields
Grey Treepie in Fields

Grey Treepie is separated from the other Treepie birds by its overall Grey Color of the body. One other way to identify this bird is a to check a small white patch on the wings.

Unlike, Rufous Treepie it is slightly difficult to see these birds because they work silently and due to grey color, they mix very well in the environment.

Grey Treepie,
Grey Treepie

Grey Treepie mainly eat insects, though they also enjoy berries, fruits, grains and reptiles. They breed between months of May to July.

The good news is that these birds are also in the least concern category as per the threat to birds.

Grey Treepie
Grey Treepie

All pics by Arvind Katoch

The Great Tit Pictures and Detail (Parus major)

Great Tit, Tit, Tiny Birds
Beautiful Great Tit

The Great Tit Pictures and Detail (Parus major)

Intitally, I thought that this bird is also Cinereous Tit, however, with some research, I found that the Tit with yellow color around the stomach and the breast is called Great Tit. I found a Pair of Great Tit and Cinereous Tit, both of them were searching food on same tree. 

Great Titi, Cenerous Together,
Great Tit and Cinereous Tit Together 
Great Tit is also a Tit family bird which is a big family of small birds. The only difference between Great Tit and Cinereous Tit is a yellow color in the stomach region in the Great Tit instead of white color in the same region in Cinereous Tit. 

The behavior and size of both birds are quite similar and it is common to find these birds together in many places. Till 2005, this the Great Tit was believed a sub species of Cinereous Tit and Japanese Tit. The Great Tit found in Europe, Middle East, Africa and Asia. 

It is resident bird and it doesn't migrate. Due to small size, this bird always remains under threat from big bird eating birds like hawks. We can find 14 subspecies of Great Tit from Europe to Japan. 

Great Tit
Great Tit on Wire

Great Tit is one of common Garden birds and they love to eat seeds and grains in the feed-eater. The Great Tit mainly eats seeds, insects, spiders, nuts etc. 

Great Tit is believed as an intelligent bird because they know how to solve problems and arrange foods. Great Tits are small sweet voiced birds like Cinereous Tit and they make our surroundings more beautiful. 

Many people in India confuse Cinereous Tit and Great Tit with each other. I have found Crinereous Tit being referred as the Great Tit at many places. As my research, the bird with yellow breast are Great Tits and Birds with White Breast are Cinereous Tit, though, both of these birds show very similar behavior and they look same except the color variation. 

Cinereous Tit, Tiny Birds
Cinereous Tit on Tree Branch

The White Capped Redstart Pictures and Detail (Chaimarrornis leucocephalus)

White Capped Redstart,  Himachal Pradesh, Himalayan Bird,
White Capped Redstart in Himachal Pradesh

The White Capped Redstart Pictures and Detail (Chaimarrornis leucocephalus)

I met White-capped Redstart in Himachal. During my visit to my native village in Himachal, my aunt told me that there is a beautiful bird moving around with white patch on the top of the head. I was lucky because I met the bird same evening and for the next four days we met three times. 

Fortunately, White-capped Redstart didn't mind my presence and I got a chance to take some beautiful pictures of this bird. White-capped Redstart is found in Indian Subcontinent and South-East Asia. Also check Plumbeous Water Redstart

White-capped, Redstart, Back,
White-capped Redstart from Back
The size of this bird is around 19 cm and its scientific name is (Chaimarrornis leucocephalus).  These birds belong to the Muscicapidae  family of birds. At present, White-capped Redstart is in the least concern category of birds as per the threat level and we can find them on a wide range. 

White-capped Redstart, Evening
White-capped Redstart at Evening
White-capped Redstart has got its name because of visible white patch on the top of its head. Both Male and Female White-capped Redstart are similar; though, we can find bigger white patch and dark colors in Male White-capped Redstart.

White Capped, Redstart
White-Capped Redstart
These birds are found in the foothills from 1500 meters to 6000 meters and they show altitudinal migration. They are also called White-capped river Redstart because they are found mostly near to rocky rivers in the hills.

White-capped Redstart,
White-capped Redstart

White-capped Redstart mainly eat insects, flies, ants, berries and grass seeds. The good point about White-capped Redstart is that it displays many postures and tail positions.

White-capped Redstart, Side
White-Capped Redstart from Side

Overall, White-capped Redstart is a wonderful bird which makes world of Birds even more beautiful. If we notice then we can find this bird; though it is not very common.

All pics of White-capped Redstart by Arvind Katoch

The Slaty-headed Parakeet Pictures and Detail (Himalayan Parrot) (Psittacula himalayana)

Slaty-headed Parakeet, Himalayan Parrot
Slaty-headed Parakeet (Himalayan Parrot) 

The Slaty-headed Parakeet Pictures and Detail (Himalayan Parrot) (Psittacula himalayana)

Before this article, I wrote about Rose-ringed Parakeet (Indian Parrot) which is a common species of parrots found in the plains of India. At that time, I was not aware that there are 372 types of Parakeet species around the world.  

When I captured the pictures of Slaty-headed Parakeet, then I found that there is a color variation from common Parrots of Plains and Himalayan Parrots are more colorful.

The Slaty-headed Parakeet (Himalayan Parrots) are called so because of the slaty color of their head region. 

Slaty-headed parakeet, Himalayan Parrot, pain
Pair of Slaty-headed Parakeet

These parrots mainly found in Himalayan range from Pakistan to Arunachal Pradesh in India including Bhutan and Nepal. Slaty-headed Parakeet (Himalayan Parrot) show altitudinal migration which means they migrate to higher peaks in summer and lower heights in winters. 

Slaty-headed parakeet, Down Swing, Wings open
Slaty-headed parakeet enjoy down swing

Though, parrots are noisy in nature, but I feel these Himalayan parrots are more noisy and active than Rose-ringed Parrots of the plains. The tail of the Slaty-headed Parakeet is more colorful than Rose-ringed Parrots. 

The eating habits of these parrots are same as of Rose-ringed Parrots, they eat grains, buds, jungle berries, fruits, vegetable, nuts etc. Himalayan Parrots are less dependable of humans for their meal as compared to urban (rose-ringed parrots) because they find most of their food themselves.

Backside, Slaty-headed parrot
Backside of Slaty-headed Parrot

To see slaty-headed parrots, one need to visit a high altitude region in Himalaya. I took these pictures 10-12 KM away from Baijnath in Himachal Pradesh. 

In the picture below, you can see the flight of a slaty-headed Parakeet
Flying, Slaty-headed Parakeet
Flight of a Slaty-headed parakeet

The Himalayan Parrots are more shy as compared to Parrots of Plains in India; therefore, you need to run lot to capture their pics. 

These parrots, like parrots of plains are not liked by farmers because they come in groups and destroy a good portion of the crop. Below in the picture, you can see Slaty-headed parakeet eating maize from a maize field. 

Slaty-headed Parakeet, Maize
Slaty-headed parakeet eating maize
Though, Himalayan live and come in a group, but it is common to see them fighting with each other which you can see in the picture below. 

Slaty-headed parakeet, PArrot fight
Slaty-headed Parakeet Fighting

It is a great experience to capture pictures of wild Himalayan Parrots and learn about their life.

Front Pic, Slaty-headed Parakeet, Himalyan parrot
Slaty-headed Parakeet
Below find another pic showing the beautiful flight of Himalyan parrot.

Slated-headed, parrot, Himalayan parrot,
Flying Himalyan Parrot

I hope to capture more Slaty-headed (Himalayan) parakeet pictures in future. 

All Pics taken by Arvind Katoch

Video Presentation of Slaty-headed Parakeet (Himalayan Parrot) Pics-