Tuesday, 6 March 2012

Black-headed cuckoo-shrike

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The Black-headed Cuckooshrike (Coracina melanoptera) is a medium sized grey and white bird, in open country sides with good tree growth.

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The male has a black head and upper breast with dark grey upper plumage. The wings are also black, with the grey or white margins on the flight feathers.

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The tail is blackish, with the central feathers being a dark ashy grey. The rest of the under parts are a pale ashy-grey fading to white in the lower regions.

Mystery bird?

The female, is a paler ashy grey, with the feathers barred paler or darker grey. The lower parts may be barred with black and white.

Mystery bird?

It has a distinctive whistling call in the breeding season, but it is usually a very silent bird. The male can be heard at the beginning on the breeding season the regular call is a repeating series of whistles:

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This bird prefers trees surrounding villages and can be spotted in avenues of roadside trees orchards and gardens. It almost never descends to the ground.

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They are usually found in small parties which fly from tree to tree, hunting for insects and larvae, which makes up its food.

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The breeding season is usually between April to May, in the south. The nest is made of twigs and roots and placed in the fork of a branch or the junction between the branch and tree.

  Sighting Information:
Location: Sarjapur
Date: 27th Feb 2011
Time: Morning; 8:40 AM
Weather: Sunny morning.
Other Details: Male seen in a tree foraging for food. Female spotted on Sept 18th 2011 at Sivanahalli.

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