Kaziranga National Park, located in the state of Assam in India, is a renowned wildlife sanctuary and a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
With its diverse habitats and varied topography, the park is home to a wide range of animals, including the majestic Royal Bengal Tiger, Indian one-horned rhinoceros, Asian elephant, and an impressive variety of avian species.
The region's rich birdlife is particularly remarkable, comprising around 500 species of birds.
From the spectacular raptors like Brahminy Kite, Crested Serpent Eagle, and Oriental Honey Buzzard to the colorful songbirds like Indian Robin, White-throated Kingfisher, and Baya Weaver, Kaziranga is a bird watcher's paradise.
This article explores the fascinating world of birds in Kaziranga National Park and highlights some of the fascinating species that can be found here.
1. Indian roller
The Indian roller is a beautiful bird of the Coraciidae family. It has an average length of 12-13 inches and weighs 5.9 to 6.2 ounces with a wingspan of 26-29 inches.
Its face and throat are pinkish, while its head and back are brown with blue on its rump, light blue markings on one side of the wing, dark blue markings on other side making it easily distinguishable in flight.
Both male and female have same colouration but males tend to be slightly larger than females though they can only be differentiated when seen together closely due to similar colouring pattern between sexes.
The Indian Roller makes spectacular aerial dives from great heights during courtship display which attracts many viewers each year.Scientific classification:
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2. Asian openbill
The Asian openbill is a large stork found in the Indian subcontinent and Southeast Asia. It has a greyish or white body, glossy black wings and tail, with an adult having a gap between upper mandible and lower one.
Juveniles don't have this unique feature but will grow it as they mature.
They feed by wading through shallow water looking for snails, crustaceans and aquatic plants to eat from the surface of mudflats or marshes.
Due to its enormous size (up to 121 cm tall) it makes quite an impressive sight when flying.Scientific classification:
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3. Green-billed malkoha
The Green-billed Malkoha is a striking bird found across the Indian Subcontinent and Southeast Asia. It measures 50 to 60 cm in length, with a waxy bluish black body and long graduated tail featuring white tips on its feathers.
The most remarkable feature of this species is its prominently curved green bill, which gives it name. These birds are usually seen in dry scrub or thin forest habitats.
They feed mainly on insects such as grasshoppers, caterpillars and beetles that they hunt by perching before swooping down to capture their prey.
In addition to hunting for food, these birds also nestle into trees during the day time when it gets too hot outside.
Weighing around 100 gmms, Green-Billed Malkohas make an interesting sight wherever they go due to their unique appearance.Scientific classification:
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4. Blue-naped pitta
The Blue-naped Pitta is a beautiful species of bird belonging to the family Pittidae. It stands out for its bright colors, including blue and green above, with reddish-yellow coloring below.
The nape and hindneck are particularly striking in their vibrant blue hue while the tail is brown mixed with some green.
Male and female birds look similar but there's one key difference: females have a reddish-brown hindcrown instead of blue.
This pitta can be found mainly throughout Southeast Asia in habitats such as tropical lowland forests or woodlands near rivers and streams where they feed on insects like beetles, grasshoppers, caterpillars and ants among other small invertebrates that live amongst foliage or on the ground surface.Scientific classification:
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5. Pallas's fish eagle
Pallas's fish eagle is a majestic bird that breeds in east Palearctic. It has a brownish colour and is classified as Endangered on the IUCN Red List due to its decreasing population.
It migrates partially, with Central Asian birds flying south during winter months for food.
This species feeds mainly on fish which it catches near riverbanks or coasts using its sharp talons and powerful wingspan of over six feet.
Although they are difficult to spot due to their elusive nature, Pallas's Fish Eagle remains an integral part of many ecosystems across Asia where its presence helps keep other populations healthy by controlling the number of fishes available for consumption.Scientific classification:
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6. Oriental pied hornbill
The Oriental Pied Hornbill is a species of Indo-Malayan bird belonging to the Bucerotidae family.
It's one of the smallest and most common Asian hornbills, with its largest distribution found in the genus Anthracoceros.
This medium sized bird has black feathers all over its body, except for white wings and a white tail that make it stand out from other birds.
Its bill is yellow on top and red underneath, while their feet are greyish black.
These colorful characteristics help them blend into various habitats such as tropical forests or woodlands.
The diet consists mainly of fruits but they also feed on insects and small vertebrates like lizards or nesting birds’ eggs when available during certain seasons throughout their range habitat areas.
Monogamous pairs of birds construct their nests together using dead branches to create a secure chamber where the female can lay her eggs.
They carefully tend to the eggs until they hatch, and then rejoin their partner at nightfall.
These nests are often located near sources of food, in the beautiful and picturesque surroundings of trees and landscapes. These locations provide stunning views and make for attractive tourist destinations.
The scenery is breathtakingly beautiful, with spectacular vistas and awe-inspiring panoramas that are sure to captivate and charm visitors.
The overall atmosphere of these locations is heavenly and paradisiacal, making them a delight to behold.
The incredible beauty and grace of these places are simply remarkable, and visitors are sure to be impressed by their elegance and distinguished grandeur.
It is an experience that is sure to leave a lasting impression on anyone who is lucky enough to visit.Scientific classification:
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7. Thick-billed warbler
The Thick-billed Warbler is a species of passerine bird found in the temperate east Palearctic region, from south Siberia to west Mongolia. In winter it migrates to tropical South Asia and South-east Asia.
It prefers dense vegetation such as reeds, bushes and thick undergrowth for breeding habitats. The nest is usually built low down in a tree and five or six eggs are laid inside it.
This plump little warbler has an olive brown back with yellowish wings and tail feathers which contrast nicely against its grey head, white throat patch around the bill area plus yellow eyebrows above bright orange eyes.
Its song consists of loud whistles that can be heard up to half a mile away during summer months.Scientific classification:
|Genus||Arundinax Blyth, 1845|
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8. Black-crested bulbul
The Black-crested bulbul is a passerine bird belonging to the Bulbul Family. It can be found in India, Southeast Asia and other parts of the Indian subcontinent.
This species was first described under genus Vanga but later moved to Pycnonotus. However recent studies have revealed that this genus is polyphyletic leading five bulbuls including black-creasted ones to be placed in different genera.
The adult has an entirely black plumage with yellowish ventral side while juveniles are brownish grey above and whitish below having some pale streaks on their backsides as well.
Its diet consists mainly of fruits, insects and flower nectar which it feeds upon foraging among foliage or perching atop trees nearby water bodies like pools and streamsScientific classification:
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9. Blue-bearded bee-eater
The blue-bearded bee-eater is a stunning species of bird found in the Indian subcontinent and parts of Southeast Asia.
This colorful avian is named for its distinctive throat feathers, which are long and often fluffed out to give it a particularly striking appearance.
The blue beard distinguishes this from other similar birds too. Blue-bearded bee eaters inhabit forest clearings and can be seen perching on branches or flying around looking for bees to snack on.
Their loud call can be heard echoing throughout their range, making them quite noticeable even when not visible.
Despite being widespread across much of the Malayan region, these beautiful birds remain under threat due to habitat loss and human interference with their natural environment – an important reminder that we must take care of our feathered friends as well as ourselves if we want them to continue gracing us with their presence in future generations.Scientific classification:
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10. Ashy woodswallow
The Ashy Woodswallow is a small bird found in South Asia. It has a short, curved bill and long wings that make it appear stocky when perched.
This species of woodswallow typically spends time high on power lines or tall bare trees but can often be seen around palm tree-dominated areas too.
Their ashy gray coloration allows them to blend into the canopy making them difficult to spot at times.
They travel in groups and are very social birds who rely heavily on one another for protection from predators such as owls and falcons.
Despite their shyness, these fascinating little creatures are incredibly important pollinators of various plants across the region which makes protecting their habitats all the more essential.Scientific classification:
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11. Jungle myna
The Jungle myna is an intelligent bird belonging to the starling family. It has a distinct tuft of feathers on its forehead and forms a frontal crest, which makes it easily recognizable.
Its range encompasses much of the mainland Indian Subcontinent but not in arid zones like India.
They are known for their intelligence and ability to mimic human speech, making them popular among pet owners as well as wildlife enthusiasts.
Furthermore, they have also been observed cooperating with other species when searching for food or nesting materials.
The Jungle Myna is often seen near water bodies where it forages for insects such as grasshoppers that make up its most important source of nutrition .
Thus due to these reasons , this beautiful creature should be protected from any harm.Scientific classification:
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12. Alexandrine parakeet
The Alexandrine parakeet is a medium-sized parrot belonging to the Psittacula genus. It is named after Alexander the Great.
Alexander transported many of these parakeets from Punjab to various countries in Europe and the Mediterranean, where they were highly valued by royalty, nobility, and warlords.
They are also known as Alexandrine parrots.Scientific classification:
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13. Grey-headed fish eagle
The Grey-headed fish eagle is a bird of prey found in South East Asia. It is a robust, large raptor with a dark brown upper body, grey head, and a lighter underbelly with white legs.
Juveniles are paler in coloration and have darker streaking. Often confused with the lesser fish eagle and Pallas's fish eagle, this majestic bird primarily feeds on fish. Their diet consists of fresh and saltwater fish, amphibians, and crustaceans.
They are well adapted to hunting over water, with sharp talons to snatch prey and excellent eyesight.
This bird of prey plays a crucial role in the maintenance of aquatic ecosystems by preventing overgrowth of fish populations.
The Grey-headed fish eagle is a magnificent and impressive bird with predatory skills that make it a fearsome hunter.Scientific classification:
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14. Large woodshrike
The Large woodshrike (Tephrodornis virgatus) can be found in south-eastern Asia, including Sumatra, Java, and Borneo.
This bird usually inhabits temperate forest, subtropical or tropical moist lowland forest, subtropical or tropical mangrove forest, and subtropical or tropical moist montane forest.
It belongs to the family Vangidae, and the Malabar woodshrike is sometimes considered to be the same species.
This bird is distinguishable by its large size, and it has a unique appearance with a black and white striped head and a rusty orange belly.
The Large woodshrike is known for its distinctive, loud, and melodious whistling calls that often last for several minutes.
This bird is also known for its cooperative breeding behavior, where multiple birds collectively help to care for and raise young chicks.Scientific classification:
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