Vagrant or irregular visitor

Brahminy Kite

Sexes alike. White head, neck, upper back and breast; rest of plumage a rich and rusty-chestnut; brownish abdomen and darker tips to flight feathers visible mostly in flight. Juvenile is brown, like Black Kite, but with rounded tail. Solitary or small scattered parties; loves water; frequently scavenges around lakes and marshes; also around villages and towns.


Sexes alike; female larger. Dark brown above; some white on head; white below; brown breast ‘necklace’, seen at rest and in flight; in overhead flight, white  body with breast band, long, narrow black tipped, barred wings with black carpal (wrist) patches. Young birds have upper body marked white. Solitary or in scattered pairs; mostly around water; perches on a stake or tree top; circles over water; hovers characteristically; dives with feet dangling; often splashes into water; carries fish on to perch.

Black-bellied Tern

A small but very long-tailed tern with black underparts, a slender build and long, deep orange bill that distinguishes it from River. Black cap, rather dark grey upperparts, white face, neck and upperparts. Underparts, black from lower breast to vent (unlike Whiskered which has a whitish vent at all times). Sexes alike.

Little Tern

A tiny tern with white forehead and black-tipped yellow bill. Pale grey back and wings with dark outer primary. Forehead patch extends as point above eye. Yellow legs. In non-breeding plumage, bill black and black crown reduced. Sexes alike. Similar but marine Saunder’s Tern S. saundersi has square-ended forehead patch, more black in primaries and browner legs.

Indian Skimmer

Sexes alike, but female slightly smaller. Slender, pointed-winged and tern-like Pied plumage, blackish-brown above, contrasting with white underbody; white forehead, neck-collar and wing bar; diagnostic yellowish-orange beak, with much longer lower mandible; red legs. Solitary or loose flocks fly over water;  characteristic hunting style is to skim over calm waters, beak wide open, the longer projecting lower mandible partly submerged at an angle, to snap up fish on striking; many rest together on sandbars.

Sociable Lapwing

Has a dark cap, with white supercilia which join at nape, black bill and legs. In flight, white secondaries contrast with black primaries and sandy-brown  upperwing-coverts and black tail band is evident. Adult breeding has yellow wash to sides of head, and black-and-maroon patch on belly. Non-breeders and juveniles have duller head patterns, white bellys and streaked breasts. Juvenile additionally has prominent buff fringes and dark subterminal crescents to scapulars and coverts.

Lesser Sand Plover

A small, compact, muddy-brown wader with dark legs, slightly longer than the Kentish. Is roundheaded with a gentle expression. In non-breeding plumage, muddy-brown on crown, cheeks, breast sides and entire upperparts including collar. Breeding female has peachy breast band. Breeding male has black mask, broad chestnut breast band and neck sides to forecrown. Stubby black bill. Nests on ground in high-altitude semi-desert.

Grey Plover

A largish stocky wader with spangled grey-brown upperparts and black armpits. Non-breeders like a big Pacific Golden but grey above. Breeders are black below to thighs; breast sides have broad white border ends. Upperparts get more spangled silver, black and white. White wingbars and rump square. In flight diagnostic black armpits (axilliaries).

European Golden Plover

A dumpy, short-billed wader with spangled yellowish upperparts, white supercilia and belly. In breeding plumage, white extends from forehead to vent in broad band bordering black face and underparts. Stockier, shorter legged and billed than Pacific Golden with white not grey underwings. Grey is larger, lacks yellow and has black armpits. Sexes similar.

Great Thick-knee

Sports a large and slightly upcurved black and yellow bill. Large yellow eye diagnostic. When resting, the mostiking features are the while forehead and "spetacles". In flight shows grey panel on wings and white patches on primaries.