Saturday, February 28, 2009

Field Study Techniques Workshop at Buttala - 2009

The annual field workshop on 'Field Study Techniques' organized by the Field Ornithology Group of Sri Lanka was held at Buttala from 6th - 9th February 2009. A total of 15 members of FOGSL participated in the workshop. Study methods for bird counting, bird ringing and bird behaviour studies were covered in the programme. Data analysis processes relevant to above studies were also carried out. A total of 30 birds were captured by mist netting during the period. Most of the birds caught were Munias and Scaly-breasted Munias dominated the study. The Munias were measured and released. All the other birds captured were ringed by plastic color rings. The majority of this group was Red -vented Bulbuls as 11 were caught in the nets. The other birds that were ringed included Brown Shrike, Yellow-eyed Babbler, Common Kingfisher, Tickell’s Blue Flycatcher, Ashy Prinia and Plain Prinia.

Since the site at the former university premises has not been in use for more than one year now, many forest birds were observed at close range throughout the area. Calls of White-rumped Shama were heard within the premises but it was not observed. The migrant species observed included forest wagtails and Indian Pitta. The total number of birds observed was 80. Since the area was very dry and sunny the number of birds observed was limited.

On the return journey, the Sarvodaya centre at Thanamalwila was visited and around 40 birds were observed at this site. Center of the ‘eco V’ at Udawalawa was also visited and interpreters explained their activities in the area under the ‘Save the Pelicans' programme. Since it was late afternoon, no bird watching was done in this location.

List of birds recorded

Common name Scientific name
Indian Peafowl Pavo cristatus
Woolly-necked Stork Ciconia episcopus
Indian Pond-heron Ardeola grayii
Cattle Egret Bubulcus ibis
Brahminy Kite Haliastur Indus
Crested Serpent-eagle Spilornis cheela
Shikra Accipiter badius
Changeable Hawk-eagle Spizaetus cirrhatus
Barred Buttonquail Turnix suscitator
Red-wattled Lapwing Vanellus indicus
Rock Pigeon Columba livia
Spotted Dove Stigmatopelia chinensis
Emerald Dove Chalcophaps indica
Orange-breasted Green-pigeon Treron bicinctus
Pompadour Green-pigeon Treron pompadora
Green Imperial-pigeon Ducula aenea
Sri Lanka Hanging-parrot Loriculus beryllinus
Alexandrine Parakeet Psittacula eupatria
Rose-ringed Parakeet Psittacula krameri
Common Hawk-cuckoo Cuculus varius
Indian Cuckoo Cuculus micropterus
Drongo Cuckoo Surniculus lugubris
Asian Koel Eudynamys scolopaceus
Blue-faced Malkoha Phaenicophaeus viridirostris
Greater Coucal Centropus sinensis
Jungle Owlet Glaucidium radiatum
Asian Palm-swift Cypsiurus balasiensis
Little Swift Apus affinis
White-throated Kingfisher Halcyon smyrnensis
Common Kingfisher Alcedo atthis
Little Green Bee-eater Merops orientalis
Blue-tailed Bee-eater Merops philippinus
Brown-headed Barbet Megalaima zeylanica
Crimson-fronted Barbet Megalaima rubricapillus
Coppersmith Barbet Megalaima haemacephala
Black-rumped Flameback Dinopium benghalense
Greater Flameback Chrysocolaptes lucidus
Indian Pitta Pitta brachyura
Common Iora Aegithina tiphia
Common Woodshrike Tephrodornis pondicerianus
Large Cuckooshrike Coracina macei
Black-headed Cuckooshrike Coracina melanoptera
Small Minivet Pericrocotus cinnamomeus
Scarlet Minivet Pericrocotus flammeus
Bar-winged Flycatcher-shrike Hemipus picatus
Black-hooded Oriole Oriolus xanthornus
White-bellied Drongo Dicrurus caerulescens
White-browed Fantail Rhipidura aureola
Asian Paradise-flycatcher Terpsiphone paradisi
Red-rumped Swallow Hirundo daurica
Grey-breasted Prinia Prinia hodgsonii
Ashy Prinia Prinia socialis
Plain Prinia Prinia inornata
Black-crested Bulbul Pycnonotus melanicterus
Red-vented Bulbul Pycnonotus cafer
White-browed Bulbul Pycnonotus luteolus
Common Tailorbird Orthotomus sutorius
Blyth's Reed-warbler Acrocephalus dumetorum
Greenish Warbler Phylloscopus trochiloides
Tawny-bellied Babbler Dumetia hyperythra
Dark-fronted Babbler Rhopocichla atriceps
Yellow-eyed Babbler Chrysomma sinense
Oriental White-eye Zosterops palpebrosus
Hill Myna Gracula religiosa
Common Myna Acridotheres tristis
Oriental Magpie-robin Copsychus saularis
White-rumped Shama Copsychus malabaricus
Indian Robin Saxicoloides fulicatus
Asian Brown Flycatcher Muscicapa dauurica
Tickell's Blue-flycatcher Cyornis tickelliae
Jerdon’s Leafbird Chloropsis jerdoni
Thick-billed Flowerpecker Dicaeum agile
Pale-billed Flowerpecker Dicaeum erythrorhynchos
Purple-rumped Sunbird Nectarinia zeylonica
Purple Sunbird Nectarinia asiatica
Long-billed Sunbird Nectarinia lotenia
White-throated Munia Lonchura malabarica
White-rumped Munia Lonchura striata
Scaly-breasted Munia Lonchura punctulata
Forest Wagtail Dendronanthus indicus
Indrika Pradeepa provided the bird list and photos.

Reported by Shamila Corea.

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

‘Sri Lanka Birds’ in the bird counting month

FOGSL conducted its annual ‘Bird Counting Month’ programme last December to assess the status of the birds of Sri Lanka. Members of the ‘Sri Lanka Birds’ web based data entry system also participated in the programme. December 2008 marked the most successful month of the system, as our members recorded the highest number of observations during the month after the launch of the system. Summary results of the analysis for December are given in this report. This analysis is based on the data downloaded on 16th February 2009. Final analysis of the ‘Bird Counting Month’ data, including the data received through other media will be published later.

A total of 15 new members have registered during the month. We warmly welcome new members to the ‘Sri Lanka Birds’ community.

Total Number of Observations 3181
Number of Species 239
Number of Endemic Species 24
Number of Proposed endemic Species 7
Number of migrant species 51

Nesting records
Number of observations 10
Number of species 7
Species (Baya Weaver, Cattle Egret, Purple-rumped Sunbird, Red-vented Bulbul, Scaly-breasted Munia, Silverbilll, White-rumped Munia)

Mostly recorded species (No: of observations)
Red-vented Bulbul (112)
Yellow-billed Babbler (99)
Common Myna (99)
House Crow (93)
White-throated Kingfisher (84)

Top five users (No: of observations)
Chandanie Wanigatunge (576)
Newton Jayawardane (558)
Salindra Kasun Dayananda (399)
Dilshan De Silva (350)
Darshana Ranatunga (247)

A total of 85 locations were visited during December by ‘Sri Lanka Birds’ members. This is the highest number of locations visited during a month after the launch of the database. As in the previous month, highest number of observations was made at Ragama (350).

Current statistics describing the number of field visits, number of observations and bird species, as well as the number of users registered in the system, are displayed on the login page of ‘Sri Lanka Birds’ - .

We would like to thank all the members for entering their valuable observations into Sri Lanka Birds. We highly appreciate the contributions of members towards conservation of birds through this initiative.

We wish you happy birding.

Administrator of “Sri Lanka Birds”
Field Ornithology Group of Sri Lanka