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Birding in the 21st Century.

News and Features

What’s on in July

Watercock male © Suresh C Sharma (See in checklist)

Although a relatively quiet month in the year for some birders, July can be an exciting time to add to our knowledge of birds. As the rains hit various parts of the country, a number of changes occur in the birdlife of the region as well.

Skulking waterbirds like bitterns and watercock become more visible. Within-country migration means that species like Indian Golden Oriole are seen much more frequently in northern India. And birding through the year has revealed hitherto unsuspected local migration, for example the departure of the supposedly resident Black Drongo from Mysuru district in summer. [Read more…]

What’s on in June

Pied Cuckoo, by Arabinda Pal, from this checklist.

June welcomes the annual monsoon, often associated with the arrival of the Pied Cuckoo – a bird which migrates from Africa to India in time for the rains. (In central and northern India, that is; southern India has resident Pied Cuckoos.) But it is also the season when other cuckoos in our region are active. As can be seen in the line graphs, some of the region’s cuckoos are especially active between April and September and thus get recorded more often. So keep alert and listen out for any cuckoos in your area! [Read more…]

What’s on in May

Indian Thick-knee, by Uday Kiran. From this eBird checklist.

May isn’t usually the most popular month amongst birders – it’s extremely hot across many parts of the country and a lot of birders are busy trying to beat the heat. However, May still has a lot to offer! Endemic Bird Day on 14 May is a chance to get outside to document birds that make their home in this part of the world and nowhere else? Make sure you get out early, to beat the heat! [Read more…]

Introducing the new media search tool

Bluethroat, by Akash Gulalia. From this eBird checklist, and image archived at the Macaulay Library.

Some exciting news as the summer heats up! The new eBird/Macaulay Library Media Search tool has been released. With this, you can explore photos and sounds uploaded through eBird, as well as the full collection of bird sounds and video archived in the Macaulay Library through traditional methods. With nearly 20,000 photos and 1,400 audio files uploaded to eBird from India (over half a million photos and more than 150,000 audio files globally) in the past five months, there is plenty to explore! [Read more…]

What’s on in April

Paddyfield Warbler

April is here and so is the heat. Large numbers of wintering migrants are expected to leave this month for cooler breeding grounds, and you can see which ones deplete in numbers by looking at the seasonality charts. Some species leave almost entirely by April – such as the Greylag Goose, Gadwall, Paddyfield Warbler and the Yellow-browed Warbler. Others, such as the Blyth’s Reed Warbler only begin to move towards the end of April.

April is also the month when some summer migrants begin appearing in the North-western states – moving into breeding grounds from south India. [Read more…]

What’s on in March

It’s that time of the year again! Resident birds have begun singing and courting for mates while winter migrants everywhere are looking to head back to their breeding grounds. Many of the birds wintering in South India will now be on passage across the northern parts of the country – announcing an exciting time for birders up north who now get a chance to see some passage migrants alongside winter migrants and residents! This frequency graph shows how Sulphur-bellied Warblers appear in Delhi and Haryana largely in March and April as they move north of their wintering grounds in central India. [Read more…]

eBird India crosses 3 million observations

Great Hornbill. Photo by Prashant Kumar.

We are happy to announce that the number of observations from India in the eBird database crossed 3 million in February 2016. Thank you to eBirders from all over the country for helping generate interesting and important information on the distribution and abundance of Indian birds!

We look forward to these collected sightings being used to describe the status of our birds and monitor the changes in their distribution and abundance. Please explore the range maps, seasonality charts, and location lists to learn more about Indian birds. And please come back to upload your own bird records to eBird India so that they can add to the collected information here. [Read more…]

What’s on in February

Barn Swallow at Hyderabad. By Phani Krishna Raavi.

This month is jam-packed with birding events. These include the Great Backyard Bird Count (12-15 Feb) and associated Campus Bird Count, which together are expected to draw well over 1,000 birdwatchers from different parts of the country. Then there are other events like the Big Bird Day, the Manipal Bird Day, various Bird Races, and the ongoing Bird Atlas efforts in Mysuru and Kerala. Finally there are monthly birding challenges for India and for the world; as well as yearlong challenges to bird toward! [Read more…]

What’s on in January

Bar-headed Geese. Photo by Vaidehi Gunjal, from this birdlist from Magadi Bird Sanctuary in Karnataka.

It’s mid-winter, which means that (1) it’s an excellent birdwatching time in most places and (2) it’s the season to count waterbirds!

Since most migrants will have settled down in their wintering sites, there is not much to look forward to in terms of bird movements. Please do, of course, look for breeding of resident raptors and report any evidence you find. Down South, where breeding for several species can happen through the year, please look carefully at all residents to see whether they might be courting, building nests, feeding young, and so on.

The monthly challenges continue; and there are a number of bird-related events to look forward to this month. [Read more…]

Make eBird your New Year’s resolution

Orange-headed Thrush. Photo by Ramki Sreenivasan.

eBird began in 2002, and in India in 2014. Since these beginnings, eBird has grown in leaps and bounds, thanks to efforts of eBirders across the globe. We hear from a large number of people each year who tell us how eBird has changed their birding habits for the better, has helped them learn more about birds, and has made their birding more fun. We also hear from many who say that they want to use eBird more often or that they keep meaning to get started. So, let’s together make our New Year’s Resolution to use eBird — more frequently and more intensively! [Read more…]