The greater adjutant was once found widely across southern Asia, mainly in India but extending east to Borneo. It is now restricted to a much smaller range with only two small breeding populations; one in India with the largest colony in Assam and the other in Cambodia. Populations disperse after the breeding season. This large stork has a massive wedge-shaped bill, a bare head and a distinctive neck pouch. During the day, they soar in thermals along with vultures with whom they share the habit of scavenging. They feed mainly on carrion and offal; however, they are opportunistic and will sometimes prey on vertebrates.
The lesser adjutant is a large wading bird. Like other members of its genus, it has a bare neck and head. It is however more closely associated with wetland habitats where it is solitary and is less likely to scavenge than the related greater adjutant. It is a widespread species found from India through Southeast Asia to Java.
The yellow bittern is a small bittern, breeding in much of the Indian Subcontinent, east to Japan and Indonesia. It is mainly resident, but some northern birds migrate short distances.
This is a small species at 15 in in length, with a short neck and longish bill. The male is uniformly dull yellow above and buff below. The head and neck are chestnut, with a black crown.
The female's crown, neck and breast are streaked brown, and the juvenile is like the female but heavily streaked brown below, and mottled with buff above.
The Eurasian wigeon is one of three species of wigeons. It is common and widespread within its range. It is 20 in long with a 31 in wingspan, and a weight of 1 kg. The breeding male has grey flanks and back, with a black rear end, a dark green speculum and a brilliant white patch on upper wings, obvious in flight or at rest. It has a pink breast, white belly, and a chestnut head with a creamy crown. In non-breeding plumage, the drake looks more like the female. The female is light brown, with plumage much like a female American wigeon. It can be distinguished from most other ducks, apart from American wigeon, on shape. However, that species has a paler head and white axillaries on its underwing. The female can be a rufous morph with a redder head, and a gray morph with a more gray head.
The great crested grebe is the largest member of the grebe family, with some larger species residing in the Americas. They measure 20 in long with 29 in wingspan and weigh 1.5 kg. It is an excellent swimmer and diver, and pursues its fish prey underwater. The adults are unmistakable in summer with head and neck decorations. In winter, this is whiter than most grebes, with white above the eye, and a pink bill.
The common merganser is a large duck, of rivers and lakes of forested areas of Europe, northern and central Asia, and North America. It eats fish and nests in holes in trees.
It is 30 in long with a 38 in wingspan, and a weight of 2.1 kg. Males average slightly larger than females but with some overlap. It has a crest of longer head feathers, but these usually lie smoothly rounded behind the head, not normally forming an erect crest.
It is found in along the northern parts of the Indian subcontinent, primarily in the Eastern Himalayas, and ranges across Bhutan, India, Tibet, and Nepal. Its natural habitats are temperate forests and subtropical or tropical moist montane forests.
It is found in the Indian subcontinent and Southeast Asia, ranging across Bangladesh, Bhutan, Cambodia, India, Indonesia, Laos, Malaysia, Burma, Nepal, Singapore, Thailand and Vietnam. Its natural habitats are subtropical or tropical moist lowland forests and subtropical or tropical moist montane forests.
The Black-shouldered Kite is a ashy gray bird with black patches on the shoulder, conspicuous at rest as well as in flight. Seen in singles in fringes of the forest and in grassland hovering in the mid-air to scan the ground and drops down on prey. Food : Insects, mice & lizards.
The grey-headed fish eagle is a large stocky raptor at about 75 cm in length. Adults have dark brown wings and back, a grey head and reddish brown breast. The lower belly, thighs and tail are white, the latter having a black terminal band. Sexes are similar, but young birds have a pale buff head, underparts and underwing, all with darker streaking.
The grey-headed fish eagle breeds in the forests of the Indian subcontinent east to Southeast Asia. It builds a stick nest in a tree near water and lays two to four eggs. It is a specialist fish eater which hunts over lakes, lagoons, and large rivers.
Adult male Eurasian sparrowhawks have bluish grey upperparts and orange-barred underparts; females and juveniles are brown above with brown barring below. The female is up to 25% larger than the male – one of the largest differences between the sexes in any bird species. Though it is a predator which specialises in catching woodland birds, the Eurasian sparrowhawk can be found in any habitat and often hunts garden birds in towns and cities. Males tend to take smaller birds, including tits, finches, and sparrows; females catch primarily thrushes and starlings, but are capable of killing birds weighing 500 grams or more.
Pallas's fish eagle is a large, brownish sea-eagle. It breeds in Central Asia, between the Caspian Sea and the Yellow Sea, from Kazakhstan and Mongolia to the Himalayas, Bangladesh and northern India. It is partially migratory, with central Asian birds wintering among the southern Asian birds in northern India, and also further west to the Persian Gulf.
It has a light brown hood over a white face. The wings are dark brown and the back rufous, darker underneath. The tail is black with a wide, distinctive white stripe. Underwings have a white band. Juveniles are overall darker with no band on the tail.
The rain quail is found in the Indian Subcontinent. It lacks barring on primaries. The male has a black breast-patch and distinctive head pattern of black and white. The female is difficult to separate from female common quail, although the spots on the breast are more delicate. It is 6.5 in in length and weighs 70 g.
It's distribution is Grassland, cropped fields, and scrubs in the Indus valley of central Bangladesh, India, Nepal and Pakistan, ranging across the Gangetic plains, and parts of peninsular continental India. Mostly seen in winter further south.
The rock bush quail is found in parts of peninsular India. They are found in small coveys and are often detected only suddenly, when they burst out into flight en masse from under vegetation. It is 7.25 in in length and weighs 85 g.
The Dalmatian pelican is a massive member of the pelican family. It breeds from southeastern Europe to India and China in swamps and shallow lakes. The nest is a crude heap of vegetation.
This huge bird is by a slight margin the largest of the pelican species and one of the largest living bird species. It measures upto 6 ft in length, 15 kg in weight and 11.5 ft in wingspan.
This species is an all-year resident throughout most tropical and subtropical parts of the Indian Subcontinent to Southeast Asia and adjoining regions. The typical habitat of brown fish owls is forest and woodland bordering streams, lakes or rice fields. This species is a large owl, but it is intermediate in size between other fish owls. It has prominent ear tufts but as in all fish owls, their tufts hang to the side of the head and have a scraggly look. The upperparts are rufous brown and heavily streaked with black or dark brown. The underparts are buffy-fulvous to whitish, with wavy dark brown streaks and finer brown barring. The throat is white and can be conspicuously puffed, while the facial disk is indistinct. The irides are golden yellow, the feet a duller yellow, and the bill is dark. Sexes do not differ in appearance except for size.
It grabs food by gliding over the water, nearly skimming it with its feet and grabbing its prey by quickly extending its long legs. It feeds mainly on fishes, frogs and aquatic crustaceans. It usually selects the larger freshwater fish available in waterways. Compared to the tawny fish owl, which prefers flowing waters, brown fish owls frequently hunt in still or stagnant waters.
The Wilson's storm petrel is a small seabird of the storm petrel family. It is one of the most abundant bird species in the world and has a circumpolar distribution mainly in the seas of the southern hemisphere but extending northwards during the summer of the northern hemisphere. The world population has been estimated to be more than 50 million pairs.
This nightjar is small and short-tailed with white corners to the tail, a golden nape and collar, dark cheeks and white patches on the sides of the throat. The crown is grey and the breast is finely barred in brown. The males have more white on the tail while the female is more heavily streaked on the crown. It is differentiated from Sykes's nightjar by the dark undertail and from Jerdon's nightjar by the shorter tail and white patches on the sides of the throat.
The call is distinctive and has been likened to a stone skipped on a frozen lake or a ping-pong ball bouncing rapidly and coming to rest.
It flies after sundown with an easy, silent moth-like flight. During the day, Indian nightjar lies still on the ground, concealed by its plumage; it is then difficult to detect, blending in with the soil.