Common birds in India - Informative & researched article on Common birds in India
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Home > Reference > Flora & Fauna > Indian Birds > Common birds in India
Common birds in India
India is a bird`s paradise as the subcontinent provides suitable living conditions for more than 2,400 birds.
 Common birds in IndiaIndia is famous as the paradise for bird watching all over the world because of its plethora of birds, found throughout India, bird watching has become . Among the numerous varieties of Indian birds, there are only a few that has some special qualities, be it singing, talking, dancing or colourful outlook. Some of the Indian birds are rarely seen and some of them are found in all parts of the country. The Sooty Tern is a seabird belonging to the Tern family and it has dark grey upper parts. The lower parts of its body are white. The Indian Shag, also known as Indian Cormorant, is one of the common Indian birds and is found almost throughout the country, excluding the higher reaches of the Himalayas. This bird is a duck-like waterfowl, slightly bigger in size than a normal duck, and its body is of glistening black colour. The bird lives in small colonies and the colonies can be found between the months of July to February. However, the months can vary from place to place.

The Common Myna is another beautiful common Indian bird that is of a dark chocolate brown colour. The bird has bright yellow bill, legs and orbital skin and in India, it has a conspicuous white patch that is seen, when the bird is in flight. The Common Myna has a variety of sharp calls that is uttered with an absurd bobbing of the head. It is commonly found throughout India including the Andaman and Nicobar Islands, Lakshwadeep etc. It is one of the most visible Indian birds and has a habit of following humans around. The Little Egret is one of the most common Indian birds and is found all over India. It has almost the same height of a village hen and it dwells mostly in the marshes, water ponds, rivers and tidal mudflats. This bird has a very cunning nature and its food menu ranges from insects, fish, and frogs to even small reptiles. Both the male and female Little Egret birds look alike and the female lays 4 bluish-green eggs in the month of July-August in Northern India. In Southern India, the birds lay eggs between the months of November and February.

Common birds in IndiaAmong all the common Indian birds, the Pond Heron or the Paddy Bird is such a bird that has a variety of low conversational notes and peculiar mumbling sounds that a nesting pair utters. The colour of the bird is brown supplemented with maroon hair like plums on the back, when it is resting and it has long white crest during the breeding season. The bird flashes its shimmering white wings, tail and rump, when it springs into flight. The Pond Heron can be found at a river, pond, roadside ditch, and the seacoast in mangrove swamps, tidal mudflats. As it is also found in the paddy fields, it is also known as the Paddy Bird. The bird is called as 'saintly heron', as well, as it stands hunched up at the remote corner of a water body watching and waiting patiently for the fish to come within reach before it picks on it in a flash.

The Redwattled Lapwing is one of the common Indian birds. This is a partridge-like bird and the best place to locate it is the water bodies where it is found in pairs. The bird can be found all over India up to about 1800 m in the Himalayas and peninsular hills. The colour of the bird is bronze-brown on above, white in below; and its breast, head and neck are black. There is also a crimson wattle in front of each eye of this beautiful bird. Another common Indian bird is the ever famous Parakeet or Parrot. This is also referred as the 'Tota' of India and is one of the most lovable birds. This large flock can be found all over the Indian Sub-continent, from the foothills of Himalayas to the southern parts of the country and it is quite destructive, agriculture-wise. It is well known for wasting more and eating less. The bird is usually green in colour with an amazingly red beak; however, the female birds lack the black and rose pink collar of male.

The Peafowl or the Indian Peacock is the National Bird of India and it has a collage of wonderful and beautifully designed colours and patterns. The bird is mainly found in the dry semi-desert grasslands, scrub and deciduous forests and it forages and nests on the ground but roosts on top of trees. Though the bird mainly eats seeds, it also eats some insects, fruits and reptiles. The most significant features of the Indian Peacock, is its beautiful iridescent blue-green plumage. The Indian Roller is one of the most common Indian Birds. This bird has a striking blue colour with a brown breast and a pail blue abdomen and under tail. The bird best exhibits the magnificence of its colours in flight, when the dark and light portions show up as brilliant bands on the wings. The bird is most commonly found at the foothills of the Himalayas.

Common birds in IndiaAnother variety of common Indian birds is the Indian White, or Rumped Vulture. This bird is an Old World vulture belonging to the Accipitridae Family, which also includes Eagles, Kites, Buzzards and Hawks. Like all the other vultures, the Rumped Vulture is also a scavenger, feeding mostly from carcasses of dead animals. The bird has quite broad wings, short tail and a white neck ruff and this specie is almost on the verge of extinction, in India. The wonderful bird, named Himalayan Monal is the state bird of Uttarakhand and it belongs to the genus, Lophophorus of the Pheasant family. The Pheasant Tailed Jacana is another common Indian bird. It can easily be identified by its striking white plumage from head to breast and by its long sickle shaped tail during the breeding season. The bird is comfortable walking on aquatic plant and is also popularly known as Lily-Walkers because of their ability. They are most commonly found on lotus ponds in Hyderabad.

Another variety of common Indian birds is the Emerald Dove, which is a state bird of Tamil Nadu. The bird is also known as the Green Dove and the Green-Winged Pigeon. The Pallas Fish Eagle is a large brownish eagle, having a pale golden head. The bird is usually found near large water bodies, in the north and northeastern parts of India. Another common Indian bird is the Blue Winged Minla and Red Tailed Minla. This bird can easily be found in evergreen forests of the Himalayas and the northeastern hills. The Rufous Winged Fulvetta is a common Indian bird that is usually found in the undergrowths in dense forests and well-wooded areas. The bird is found only in the North-Eastern states and the Himalayas.

Common birds in IndiaThe Great Indian Bustard is a common large ground dwelling bird in India. It has a long neck and long bare legs and it weighs nearly eighteen kilograms. This bird is most commonly found in the states of Rajasthan and Madhya Pradesh in India. The Mountain Hawk Eagle is another common Indian bird, most commonly found in the mountainous regions, barring on under parts. Another variety of common Indian birds, the Black Eagle is mainly found in the broadleaved forests in hills and mountains, in Lava, West Bengal. The Black Shouldered Kite is a widespread and common raptor, found throughout India. The bird is often seen hovering in the air searching for prey and is usually found near Manjira Reservoir, Hyderabad.

The Black Kite or Pariah Kite is one of the common Indian birds, which is found throughout the country. This is a dark brown kite that can be seen circling and soaring in the urban areas. The bird can easily be distinguished by the shallow 'v-shaped' tail and is generally found in the state of Hyderabad. The Malabar Grey Hornbill is an orange-yellow bill and has an overall grey appearance. The bird has paler grey streaking on sides of its head and the female bird has a blackish base at the start of the lower mandible. This bird is most commonly seen in Kerala. The Indian Nightjar is a variety of the Nightjars, which are crepuscular (active in the evenings). All the Nightjars are dull coloured and well camouflaged and they are mainly found in Hyderabad.

Commonly found in most parts of India, the Jungle Owlet is counted among the most common Indian birds. The bird is mainly found in well-wooded areas and it is actually a small owl with heavy barring. The Racket Tailed Drongo is another Indian bird having streaming tail feathers that give the bird its name. This bird is commonly found in dense forests and bamboo jungle and has various calls ranging from musical to harsh. The bird lovers like to watch the great sight of the swishing tail of this bird, when it flies across the forest canopy. Generally found on lotus pond, the bird named Purple Swamphen is also one of the common Indian birds. This is a bluish-purple bird with a red gaudy beak and is commonly found in marshy areas, all over the country, lurking around reed beds and water hyacinth plants.

Common birds in IndiaAnother common Indian bird, mostly found in the North-Eastern states is the Little Pied Flycatcher. The female bird is dull brown in colour and commonly found in Lava, North Bengal. The Hill Myna is a sturdy jet-black starling Indian bird, mainly found in the lower ranges of the Himalayas from Kumaon to the east to Sikkim and Arunachal Pradesh. A beautiful variety of common Indian birds is the Verditer Flycatcher. This bird is mainly found in woodlands and can also be found in many parts of the country in the winter. The bird mainly breeds in the northeast and the Himalayas and the female of the species has a lighter colour.

Among the common Indian birds, the Crimson Breasted Barbet or the Coppersmith is one of the foremost. The bird is commonly found in most parts of the country and it is known as the Coppersmith because of the tuk-tuk-tuk sound that it makes. The sound resembles that of a coppersmith beating copper on an anvil. The Indian Robin is another common Indian bird, often seen hopping around on the ground looking for insects. The male and female species of this bird are dissimilar. Another wonderful variety of common Indian birds is the Indian Roller. This bird has bright blue wings with brownish upper parts and is common throughout India. The bird can be found perched on open branches and electric wires in open country. The Yellow Billed Babbler is a beautiful bird, having pale white head and yellow bill. This is common all over the southern India and is usually seen moving around noisily in flocks of seven or more.

Common birds in IndiaThe Scaly-Breasted Munia is a famous common Indian bird. The adult bird has scaly lower breast, belly and flanks, while the juvenile has brown upperparts and lacks the scaled feathers. This bird is often seen in flocks and mainly feeds on grass seeds. The Asian Koel is another common Indian bird, found in many places in India. The male Asian Koel has a greenish-black colour, has red eyes and a pale green bill. On the other hand, the female bird is brownish above and is heavily striped and spotted. The bird has a persistent and loud ku-OO ku-OO call and like all the other cuckoos, the Koel is also a 'brood parasite' that lays its eggs in the nest of other birds.

The White Browed Wagtail, also known as the Pied Wagtail is one of the common Indian birds. It has a pied plumage and is commonly found near water, usually in pairs. Another variety of common Indian birds is the Purple Heron. This is a large, colourful Heron having a long snake like neck. The colours of the bird become brighter, during its breeding season and the breast plumes also become more pendulous. Other Heron birds like the Grey Heron, the Black-Crowned Night Heron, the Painted Stork, the Small Pratincole, the Little Ringed Plover, or the River Tern are generally found in Hyderabad. A commonly found resident breeding bird in India is the Green Imperial Pigeon. This bird has a number of sub species and its flight is fast and direct. The Great Thick-Knee is a common Indian bird, usually found in pairs or in groups on the banks of freshwater rivers and lakes. The bird can also be found on shores of lagoons and estuaries.

Counted among the most common Indian birds, the Green Bee-Eater is also considered as the most familiar and widespread bee-eater in India. This bird has elongated tail feathers, which are absent in the juvenile and is often seen sitting on fences and electric wires. The bird predominantly feed on insects, including bees, wasps, dragonflies and butterflies, which are caught in the air while performing sorties. The Greater Flamingo is a larger species of the Flamingo family and is commonly found in the coastal regions of India. The Plain Prinia bird is a small warbler, which is typically found in wet grassland, open woodland, grass and secondary growth. This is an active bird and constantly waves its long tail around, while flitting around.

Common birds in IndiaOne of the noisiest common Indian birds is the Asian Paradise Flycatcher. This migratory bird spends its winter in tropical Asia and it is found in the southern parts of India. The Barn Swallow is a common Indian bird that is highly adaptable and can nest almost anywhere. It has a deeply forked tail that can be seen in flight. The cup-shaped nest of the bird is made up of mud and the inside is lined with feathers, grass and other soft materials. This is a resident bird in Lava and found nesting in almost every house. For the rest of India, it is a winter visitor. Another common Indian bird is the Grey Headed Fish Eagle. As the name goes, this eagle mainly subsists on a diet of fish. It has grey head, brown back and its flanks and tail are seen with a black terminal band that can easily be observed in flight. The bird is most commonly found in North/North-Eastern parts of the country and also in pockets in peninsular India.

Among the common Indian birds, the Greater Coucal is a notable one and it is a widespread bird in India. It can mainly be found in the overgrown shrubs, gardens and forest edges. A wonderful variety of common Indian birds is the Great Hornbill. This is the largest member of the Hornbill family, being nearly four feet tall and its tail feathers reach thirty-six inches. The Black-Crested Bulbul is a bird that is commonly found in India. This is nineteen centimeters in length and the upper parts of its body are olive, while the lower parts are bright yellow. The Tickell's Blue Flycatcher is another beautiful bird, having a distribution from central India down south and also parts of the northeast. The bird has blue colour in its upper parts and it's under parts are clearly separated into orange uppers and white lowers. The female bird is of duller blue in colour and is commonly found in wooded areas in forests.

Common birds in IndiaOne of the common game birds in India, the Black Francolin is commonly found in scrubby habitat. This bird is a resident breeder from Kashmir, and northeast India. Another variety of common Indian birds, the Black-Necked Crane is widespread in India in the high altitudes lakes of Ladakh such as Tso Kar Lake. Another variety of common Indian birds is the Hume Pheasant, commonly found in dense forests of India. The bird grows up to ninety centimeters in length. Another variety of common Indian birds is the Rose-Ringed Parakeet. This is the most common and widespread Parakeet throughout the country. The male bird has a black and rose collar that is absent in the female bird.

Another common Indian bird, the Goshawk is a medium sized bird of prey and it is the largest member of the genus, Accipiter. The Changeable Hawk Eagle, also known as the Dark Morph, is one of the common Indian birds. The Pale Morph is another variation of this bird and it is mainly found in dense forests. The size of the bird varies from 60-70cms and it is found in most parts of the country, except extreme north and North West parts. Another common Indian bird is the Crested Serpent Eagle. It is a beautiful eagle having a black-white crest and it is most commonly found in the forested areas in most parts of the country. The trademark of the bird is the kweeee- kwee-kwee call and it is most commonly found in Kaziranga in Assam and Thattekad in Kerala. One of the most common Indian birds, the Blood Pheasant is a state bird of Sikkim and mainly resides in coniferous or nixed forests and scrub areas right at the snowline.

The White Breasted Waterhen is one of the most common Indian birds that can be easily identified by the white patch that starts from near the head all the way down to the lower parts of the breast. The bird is most found near jheels, lakes, lotus ponds and other small ponds around the countryside. One of the common Indian birds, the Sarus Crane is most commonly found in the Central India and the Gangetic plains in the freshwater marshes and plains. A common Indian bird, belonging to the Pheasant Family, is the Blyth's Tragopan. This bird is found mostly in the subtropical and temperate forests of northeast India.

Another beautiful variety of common Indian birds is the Baya Weaver or the Indian Weaver Bird. This is a seed eating bird having rounded conical bills and is closely related to the finches. This bird is well known for its elaborately woven nests and this gregarious bird mainly breeds in colonies that can be found in scattered trees in open country. The breeding male Baya Weaver bird has a bright yellow crown and a dark brown mask around the eye. On the other hand, the non-breeding males and females resemble with the female House Sparrows. These birds lack the dark brown mask, as well. The common Indian bird, White-Throated Kingfisher is also widely distributed in the country. This bird usually grows up to twenty-eight meters in length.

(Last Updated on : 07/06/2013)
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