Sunday, July 20, 2008

White Browed Wagtail - India

White Browed Fantail, originally uploaded by Michael A. Nelson.

In the same bird sanctuary (Ranganthittu Bird Sanctuary near Mysore) I captured this photograph of the White Browed Wagtail. So many of the birds at the Sanctuary were large storks. I am surprised I was able to notice this much smaller bird.

It was a very hot day with bright sun. I would have preferred to be there earlier in the morning to get better light however I was very happy to be at such a wonderful location.

As you can see from this photograph the White-browed Wagtail is insectivorous, and often fans its tail as it moves through the undergrowth.


david said...

Hi Michael,

Nice photo as always!

I'm not an expert on the birds of the Indian subcontinent (haven't been there ... yet), but I think this is a White-browed Wagtail (Motacilla madaraspatensis), not a White-browed Fantail (Rhipidura aureola).

Compare your photo with this White-browed Wagtail. Note the solidly black throat and upper breast, fine white crescent below the eye, white blaze down the length of the wing, and general posture and stance.

Here is a White-browed Fantail, which looks different and has different behavior.

Wagtails tend to walk along rocks near water, pumping their tails. Most fantails, on the other hand, flit around in the shrubs or trees, spreading their tail feathers open like small fans.

Michael Nelson said...

You are so right. Thanks so much for the catch. After I looked at your links as well as doing a Google image search I am not sure how I got a Fantail out of this photo in the first place!!! Now off to make the changes at Birdstack, Flickr and my Lightroom master file. Cheers!