Monthly Archives: January 2012

Spotted Owlets

Spotted Owlets

The species name brama is from the French name Chouette brame and indirectly refers to this owl’s Indian habitat by way of homage to Brahma, the Hindu supreme spirit. In Hindu mythology the owl is a vahan (mode of transport) of Lakshmi, goddess of wealth. This myth has let to sacrifices of owls in hopes of finding treasures and hidden wealth.

Montagu's Harrier male in flight

Montagu's Harrier male in flight

The Montagu’s Harrier (Circus pygargus) is a migratory bird of prey of the harrier family. Nagpur gets a very small population of them passing through while they migrate. These are birds of vast open lands and naturally finding one in city is rather unusual. I was lucky to get this shot on 25th Jan 2012…

While the bird is classified as “Least Concern” by IUCN the threat to them is because 70% of the breeding European population is now using farmlands to build their nest. Crop harvests have a devastating effects on the nests.

Trivia: Its common name commemorates the British naturalist George Montagu.

Lesser Flamingos at sunset...

Lesser Flamingos at sunset...

Flamingos live until they are about 40 years old but only breed every five or six years. Non-breeding birds do not return to breeding sites until they are ready to breed again. This and rapid loss of habitat has put this bird in the near threatened list

African Buffalo

African Buffalo

Known as one of the “big five”, “Black Death” or “widowmaker” in Africa, the African buffalo is widely regarded as a very dangerous animal, as it gores and kills over 200 people every year. Buffalo are sometimes reported to kill more people in Africa than any other animal, although the same claim is also made of hippos and crocodiles. Buffalo are notorious among big game hunters as very dangerous animals, with wounded animals reported to ambush and attack pursuers.

Dholes

Dholes

Dhole is the only extant member of the genus Cuon, which differs from Canis by the reduced number of molars and greater number of teats. The dholes are classed as endangered by the IUCN, due to ongoing habitat loss, depletion of its prey base, competition from other predators, persecution and possibly diseases from domestic and feral dogs. Though fearful of humans, dhole packs are bold enough to attack large and dangerous animals such as wild boar, water buffalo, and even tigers.

Ref: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dhole

African Hoopoe

African Hoopoe

The African Hoopoe is distinguished from the Eurasian Hoopoe or the Common Hoopoe by the colouring of the male (the females are similar). The male African Hoopoe is a richer cinnamon colour above, lacks the subterminal white band on the crest and has all black primaries. Habits and vocalisations are the same in both species.