TAIGA FLYCATCHER (Ficedula albecilla)
The Taiga Flycatcher or the Red-Throated Flycatcher is also known as “ Taiga Chutki “ in Bengali. It is a migratory bird which comes to the Indian Subcontinent from North Eurasia during winters.
Where could you find them in Kolkata?
Interestingly, if this bird gets ample amount of food and a place for shelter, they make this place their home.Thus, they are found almost throughout the year in India. However, the numbers increase in the winter season. In Kolkata, it could be visible in places such as Central Park, Santragachi Jheel, and Rabindra Sarobar and even quite often in IIM Joka.
When should you photograph a Taiga Flycatcher?
If you are trying to photograph this bird, use a zoom lens. A Taiga Flycatcher isn’t a very shy bird and you could approach it even as a first timer. Stay calm, walk slowly but steadily towards it otherwise the bird might fly away and all your efforts will go in vain. Preferably morning time is best suited to capture the varied images of the bird. This bird is a Flycatcher, so it will not give you a lot of time to photograph it. They are very quick and are responsible for your high shutter speed.
Photographing the Taiga flycatcher, characteristics, breeding and the necessary details:
The female bird has brown upper parts with a blackish tail flanked by white. Their breasts are buffish with under parts mostly white. The male Taiga Flycatcher has ear coverts and sides of the neck blue-tinged grey. The breeding males possess orange-red coloration on the throats. Unlike Taiga Flycatcher, the female of the similar Red-breasted Flycatcher has brown tail while the red color in breeding males extends up to the breast in red-breasted flycatcher. It breeds in North Eurasia spanning from Eastern Russia to Siberia as well as in Mongolia. The forests of taiga trees are their natural habitat.
Taiga Flycatcher call: Dry trrr, tszeet-tszeet
Photographing my first Taiga Flycatcher in Central Park, Kolkata was a experience of a lifetime. The mannerism of this bird never fails to amuse me. They try to catch the insect from their perch and if required, they would drop to the ground to catch the prey, often cocking their tail and then later sit with its drooping wings. In fact “ British Ornithologists’ Union Records Committee” (BOURC) has admitted Taiga Flycatcher to Category A of the British List such is the beauty of the bird
- They are mostly found during winter, so the best time to search for them is from September – January.
- Not very shy though, can be approached to a very close distance with lot of patience
- once learned can be spotted by identifying their calls
- Best way to photograph them is to spot and wait for them to catch insects from the ground
- Always morning is preferred to spot them.
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