Wednesday, July 2, 2008

My House - A Nesting Paradise !!

I live in India,in the valley of Dehradun(Uttarakhand),which is on the foothills of the Himalayas and has a pleasant climate throughout the year.This is the reason why almost 550 species of birds are found here !!

My house has not been built on a very large area since the entire area is about 1 Bigha,having mostly fruit trees such as Mango,Litchi ,Plum,Pear,Guava, Chakotra, Papaya,Peach, Pomegranate etc...The Garden has also not been maintained as such since we allow all types of plants and weeds that come up during the monsoon season to grow.Thus,a plethora of wild plants are present that add a lot of variety to the garden !!

This summer season has been a delight for me since lots ofunusual sightings,behaviour and nests have been witnessed by me during this period...Initially in the month of april, a Red-Ventedbulbul and a Spotted Dove had built their nests on the bougainvillea shrubs and a White-Eye had built its nest well concealed between the braches of a litchi tree in my house...Unfortunately,all 3 nests had been raided by the crow pair, which has been living in its nest on the East Himalayan Fur tree since 4 years.

White-Eared (Himalayan) Bulbul nest

A Plain Flowerpecker had also built its oblong hanging nest on the upper branch of the Lithci tree just besides the 'Tori' Vine but it had survived from the terror of the crows..Around Mid-May,a chich fledged from the nest.

A White-Throated Fantail FLycatcher had also built its nest deepinside the Bamboo Branches , and a chick fledged from the nest tooin the Month of May.

Fantail-Flycatcher plastering its nest with cobweb

3 Days ago as i was strolling in my garden,looking for some bird activity,i noticed a Spotted Dove in the process of nidification in the same Bougainvillea branch where it had made its nest 2 months ago !!...But this time ,it seems determined not to let the crows gulp its eggs since it does not fly away from the nest even for a minute !!...The White-Eye too has built another nest in the Same Litchi tree close to where it had previously built its nest !!...But today at 9:00 am during my stroll in the garden, as i went close to the Plum Tree to gulp down some savory plums,i noticed a nest,which definitely belonged to the Bulbul family ,as suggested by its stucture...Then i saw a pair of Red-Vented bulbul settling down on the Plum Tree and biting the Red- plums ...But it did not go near the nest !! I was surprised !!...May be the Crows had taken away the eggs this time too !!..But then the pair flew over to the Bougainvillea Tree ...I went there to check out what was there that was attracting the bulbuls since 2-3 days ...Then another nest became visible ,but it seemed bigger thanthe normal size,again belonging to the Red-Vented Bulbul !!

So my inference is that during the Breeding Season,if the nesting of any bird fails due to some reason, they again start the process of nidification after a month or two to compensate for the loss of the previous nest and their determination to bring up their off springsis a thing that should be admired by one and all !! Hope they are able to successfully rear their young this time !!

Summary of the Nests found this season uptil now :-

'3' Red-vented Bulbul nests --- 2 on Bougainvillea, 1 on Plum Tree

'2' Spotted Dove Nests --- Bougainvillea Tree

'2' White-Eye nests --- Litchi tree

'1' Plain FLowerpecker Nest --- Litchi tree

'1' Fantail-Flycatcher Nest --- Bamboo tree

'1' White-Eared Bulbul Nest --- Rose shrub

'1' Jungle Babbler Nest --- Litchi tree

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