widespread resident

Indian Thick-knee

Sexes alike. Sandy-brown plumage, streaked dark; whitish below breast; thickish head, long, bare, yellow legs and large eye-goggles diagnostic; white wing-patch in flight. Solitary or in pairs; strictly a ground bird; crepuscular and nocturnal; rather quiet, sitting for long hours in same patch, where seen regularly; colouration and habitat makes it difficult to spot; squats tight or runs in short steps when located and disturbed, moving suspiciously. The Great Thick-knee Esacus recurvirostris is larger and has an upturned bill.

Bronze-winged Jacana

A lily-trotter with unmistakable long legs and very long toes; glossy black head, neck, underparts; glossy bronzegreen upperparts; prominent white supercilium; yellow bill with blue/ red frontal shield; rump, tail, undertailcoverts chestnut; sociable, except in breeding season; fairly tame but wary; will feed in open, often hides partially under water among aquatic plants; walks on floating vegetation; active diurnal feeder.

Pheasant-tailed Jacana

Sexes alike. Male: breeding plumage chocolate-brown and white; goldenyellow on hind-neck. Dull brown and white; when not breeding, also has blackish necklace and lacks long tail; very long toes diagnostic. Solitary or in pairs when breeding; small flocks in winter; purely aquatic, moving on vegetation-covered pond surfaces; unusually long toes enable it to walk on the lightest of floating leaves; quite confiding on village ponds.

Common Moorhen

Sexes alike. Dark grey head and neck; dark brownish-olive above; slatygrey below, white centre of abdomen; fine white border to edge of wing; bright red frontal
shield and base of beak with greenish-yellow tip diagnostic; greenish legs. Usually in small parties; most common in winter; moves amidst marsh vegetation, jerking tail; good swimmer; jerks head as it swims. The larger Eurasian Coot Fulica atra is a widespread resident.

Purple Swamphen

Sexes alike. Purplish-blue plumage; long red legs with oversized toes distinctive; thickish red beak; bald red forehead (casque); white under stumpy tail, seen when tail flicked up; bald red patch on forehead smaller in female than male. Small parties amidst reeds and other vegetation on marsh and jheels; sometimes large gatherings on vegetation-covered waterbodies; walks on floating growth, rarely swims; rather tame in some areas.

White-breasted Waterhen

Sexes alike. White forehead and sides of head; dark slaty-grey above; silky white below; slaty-grey sides of breast and flanks; rufous on vent and under tail-coverts. Solitary or in small parties; often around village ponds and tanks, occasionally derelict patches in towns; jerks stumpy tail as it walks with long strides; climbs trees easily, especially when breeding.

Yellow-footed Green Pigeon

Male ashy olive-green above; olive-yellow collar, band in dark slaty tail; lilac-red shoulder-patch (mostly absent in female); yellow legs and underbody. Female slightly duller than male. The nominate (northern) race has grey lower breast and belly. Small flocks; mostly arboreal, rarely coming to salt-licks or cropland; remains well hidden in foliage but moves briskly; has favourite feeding trees.

Red Collared Dove

Male: deep ashy-grey head; black hind-neck collar; rich wine-red back; slaty grey-brown lower back, rump and uppertail; whitish tips to all but central tail feathers. Female: much like Eurasian Collared Dove, but smaller size and more brownish colouration distinctive. Solitary, in pairs or small parties; associates with other doves but is less common; feeds on ground, gleaning on harvested croplands; perches and suns on leafless branches and overhead wires.

Eurasian Collared Dove

Sexes alike. Greyish-brown plumage; lilac wash about head and neck; black half-collar on hind-neck diagnostic; broad whitish tips to brown tail feathers,
seen as a terminal band when fanned during landing; dull lilac breast and ashygrey underbody. Small parties when not breeding; often associates with other doves; large gatherings glean in cultivated country; strong flier, chases intruders in territory.

Spotted Dove

Sexes alike. Grey and pinkbrown above, spotted white; white-spotted black hind-neck collar (chessboard) diagnostic; dark tail with broad white tips to outer feathers seen in flight; vinous-brown breast, merging into white on belly. Young birds are barred above and lack chessboard. Pairs or small parties on ground; frequently settles on paths and roads, flying further on intrusion; quite tame and confiding in many areas; drinks often; at harvest times, seen along with other doves in immense gatherings.