DARTER – Vol. 1 – Issue 10 (Apr-Jun 2019)


With each passing year, summer is becoming relentless to bear. However, similar to the past two years, our birders have kept their enthusiasm throughout the second quarter and have come up with good records. Our team also took a different approach to raise awareness for Endemic Bird Day. Yet again, the contribution by our birders is on the highest level. Sightings and records which are entered in eBird are only taken into account towards writing of this e-magazine. —Ganeshwar SV.


On April 4, 2019, the students of Panchayat Union Primary School, Kurichi collected coconut shells along with their headmaster Kalai Selvan V and made water bowls to help birds to beat the heat of summer.


On April 16, 2019, Senthil Kumar S recorded a GREATER SPOTTED EAGLE Clanga clanga just for the second time and photographed it for the first time in Salem. Please see the complete checklist here. The previous record of the species was from Kannankurichi Lake in 2015.

GSE Vasen Suli
GREATER SPOTTED EAGLE photographed by Senthil Kumar S


On the occasion of Endemic Bird Day and Global Big Day, Salem Ornithological Foundation took a new approach of organizing and conducting a Quiz using WhatsApp messenger as a tool to raise awareness on the endemic birds of Salem. The quiz was conducted from 28 April to 3 May 2019. A total of fifteen questions were asked including call-based and pictorial questions. To see the list of questions and the results, please click here.


On May 4, 2019, during the 5th Endemic Bird Day (coinciding with the Global Big Day) Salem birders recorded a total of 122 species and submitted 301 checklists. With such contribution, Salem was ranked as No.1 district in terms of total checklists and No.2 by species recorded in Tamil Nadu.

Ebd 2019

Notable sighting of the day was CINEREOUS TIT Parus cinereus recorded by Subramania Siva.

CITI by Siva
CINEREOUS TIT photographed by Subramania Siva


On May 18, 2019 as many as nine species of birds of prey or raptors were recorded in good numbers on a single day in the Kuppanur Ghat section of Yercaud in Salem. The two teams of birders consisting Angeline Mano, Divya Subramani, Ganeshwar SV, Vadivukkarasi, Senthil Kumar and Subramania Siva sighted SHIKRA Accipiter badius, BLACK KITE Milvus migrans, ORIENTAL (Crested) HONEY-BUZZARD Pernis ptilorhynchus, RED-NECKED FALCON Falco chicquera, SHAHEEN FALCON Falco peregrinus peregrinator, CRESTED SERPENT EAGLE Spilornis cheela, CHANGEABLE HAWK-EAGLE Nisaetus cirrhatus, RUFOUS-BELLIED EAGLE Lophotriorchis kienerii and the BLACK EAGLE Ictinaetus malaiensis.

RBEA by Angeline
RUFOUS-BELLIED EAGLE photographed by Angeline Mano
CSE 2 by AM
CRESTED SERPENT EAGLE photographed by Angeline Mano


On May 24, 2019, Subramania Siva and Senthil Kumar recorded a ORIENTAL PRATINCOLE Glareola maldivarum in Mettur, which is the first record for Salem. Please see the complete checklist here.

ORPR by Suli
ORIENTAL PRATINCOLE in flight photographed by Subramania Siva


On June 1 & 2, 2019, a team of birders consisting of Rajangam Periyasamy, Senthil Kumar S, Subramania Siva, Angeline Mano, Tamil Selvan A and Ganeshwar SV set out to explore the lesser known Pachaimalai Hills located in the Gangavalli taluk of Salem district. They recorded 66 species including the rare YELLOW-THROATED BULBUL Pycnonotus xantholaemus.

Pachamalai 1 by AM
A small water catchment near the roadside. Photograph by Angeline Mano
Pachamalai 2 by AM
PACHAIMALAI HILLS photographed by Angeline Mano


On June 5, 2019, World Environment Day was celebrated in the birding clubs of schools associated with Salem Ornithological Foundation including Panchayat Union Middle Schools Thalavaipatty & Krishnampudur, Panchayat Union Primary School, Puzhuthikuttai. Students took a pledge that they would be eco-friendly citizens. The events were coordinated by the teacher birders and was supported by the Head Masters.


On June 29, 2019, Abilash Chandrapal, Tamil Selvan A and Angeline Mano photographed and recorded the calls of INDIAN CUCKOO Cuculus micropterus which is a rarity to Salem. Please see the complete checklist here.

INCU by Angeline
INDIAN CUCKOO photographed by Angeline Mano


On June 30, 2019, due to some unknown reason, a female ASIAN KOEL Eudynamys scolopaceus had fallen from a tree and was caught by a cat. With the support of Kalaiselvan V, four children R.K. Divya, R.K. Tharun, K. Navanithan and K. Bala rescued the injured bird, kept it for overnight observation and released it safely the next day morning.

Rescue kalai 30 jun
Rescued ASIAN KOEL female photographed by Kalaiselvan V