Coppersmith Barbet (Megalaima haemacephala)
The Coppersmith Barbet is a short, stocky bird, with a leaf-green body that allows it to remain well-camouflaged in the canopy. It is resident in India and other South Asian nations. It is commonly known as “Bosonto bauri” in Bengali. It was named as the official bird of Mumbai in 2011.
Where could you find the Coppersmith Barbet in Kolkata?
In Kolkata they are found all throughout the year in places such as Central Park, Santragachi Jheel, Chintamoni Kar Sanctuary in Narendrapur, Dankuni. You could also come across them on the sun shed of your neighbour!
When should you photograph the Coppersmith Barbet?
The ideal time for a bird photographer to shoot the bird is early morning. The Coppersmith Barbet is an approachable bird; hence a bit of caution can fetch you varied images of the bird although it becomes difficult to spot the bird due to its green colour. Wait until they perch sitting on a dead wood or log, chiselling out holes.
Photographing the Coppersmith Barbet, characteristics, breeding and the necessary details:
A tiny bird with a red cap and throat, the Coppersmith Barbet gets its name from the sound a coppersmith makes by beating sheets of copper with a mallet.
It has vibrant colours all over its body with red forehead, yellow coloured eye ring and throat patch with streaks underside and upper parts are of the colour of green grass. Both males and females are alike. .Juveniles look dull due to the absence of the red patch.
Like other Barbets, they chisel out a hole inside a tree to build their nest. Usually they feed upon fruits and insects. They breed throughout the year, laying up to two to three eggs.
Coppersmith Barbet call: loud tuk tuk tuk
Photographing the Coppersmith Barbet sitting on a fig tree at Central Park, Kolkata was a thrilling experience for me. This isn’t a shy bird; hence you can go near to them but be cautious. According to me the artistic way in which they chisel out a hole only with the help of their beak on the tree branches for nesting is outstanding. Other two Barbets that common in central park are Blue-throated Barbet and Lineated Barbet
- easy to spot and approach.
- calls are distinctive and can be heard from distance.
- usually found around fruiting trees.
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