Among the several migrants that we saw in Nandi Hills last week, this
INDIAN BLUE ROBIN
delighted us with a bathing display.
The Blue Robin is a visitor to Karnataka; I didn’t know that it is now considered a Flycatcher, rather than a Thrush, according to the Wiki!
These beautiful birds winter in the hill forests of the Western Ghats of India and in Sri Lanka.
As usual, the female is a drab olive colour while the male is quite flaunty!
The Indian Blue Robin is insectivorous and feeds mainly on the ground. It skulks in undergrowth and hops on the ground, frequently flicking and fanning its tail
These birds arrive in the Himalayan breeding grounds in May and leave in September. Southward migration begins in August. During the migratory season they may be found as passage migrants all over peninsular India.
In winter they are found mainly in the hill forests of southern India, the Western Ghats and in Sri Lanka. They arrive in mid-September and leave the winter quarters in mid April.
The Wiki says, "The habitat in which they are found is usually dense and dark forest with undergrowth and leaf litter. They sing and call in their winter grounds". Dense dark forest? We found them in the middle of a nursery in Nandi Hills!
The song consists of sudden and sharp series of whistles ending in a rapid series of notes. They also utter a sharp and low clicking alarm note
Having said all this, the Wiki is silent upon its bathing behaviour! :D
But that was a privilege granted to us, on a misty morning in Nandi Hills.
We just watched, riveted, as the bird, not bothered by our presence or the chill weather, splashed around.
Delighted, we watched until it was done…
Here’s a short video that I took:
Can you hear the clicks of the camera shutters! What a superstar this bird was!
Going to Nandi Hills again on Friday, let’s see what I see….!