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Indian Pitta - BirdForum Opus

Alternative names: Bengal Pitta; Blue-winged Pitta; Green-winged Pitta

Indian name Naorang means bird with nine colors
Photo © by Alok Tewari
Mangar Bani Forest, Faridabad-Gurgaon Road, Haryana, India, June-2018
Pitta brachyura


18cm (7 in)

  • Buff crown
  • Thick black eye stripe
  • White throat and neck
  • Green upperparts
  • Blue rump, black tail with blue tip
  • Large glossy blue patch on lesser wing-coverts
  • Buff underparts with bright red on lower belly
  • Buff legs

Sexes are similar, but young birds are duller than the adult.

Similar species

Differs from similar Fairy Pitta in smaller size, head pattern, darker underparts and less extensive red below.

Photo © by firecrest15
Hibiscus Garden hotel, Tissamaharama, Sri Lanka, March 2010


Breeds in northeast Pakistan, in the foothills of the Himalayas of India, Nepal and Bhutan and in north and central India. Has probably bred in Bangladesh.
Winters in southern India and Sri Lanka.
Locally fairly common.


This is a monotypic species[1].
It forms a superspecies with Fairy Pitta, Blue-winged Pitta and Elegant Pitta and has been considered conspecific with the first two.


Found in dense undergrowth of deciduous and evergreen forest, in scrub, bamboo jungle or sal forest. Recorded up to 1700m in India.



Feeds on insects, larvae, earthworms, small snails and millipedes.
Forages on the ground, tossing aside leaves and digging with its bill in the wet soil.


Breeding season from May to August. The nest is shaped like a rugby football and made of twigs, bamboo leaves, grass, moss and roots. It's placed 3-4m (sometimes more) above the ground in a tree, sometimes also on the ground. Lays 4-6 eggs.


  1. Clements, J. F., T. S. Schulenberg, M. J. Iliff, D. Roberson, T. A. Fredericks, B. L. Sullivan, and C. L. Wood. 2017. The eBird/Clements checklist of birds of the world: v2017, with updates to August 2017. Downloaded from http://www.birds.cornell.edu/clementschecklist/download/
  2. Dickinson, EC, ed. 2003. The Howard and Moore Complete Checklist of the Birds of the World. 3rd ed., with updates to October 2008 (Corrigenda 8). Princeton: Princeton Univ. Press. ISBN 978-0691117010
  3. Gill, F and D Donsker (Eds). 2010. IOC World Bird Names (version 2.7). Available at http://www.worldbirdnames.org/.
  4. Del Hoyo, J, A Elliot, and D Christie, eds. 2003. Handbook of the Birds of the World. Volume 8: Broadbills to Tapaculos. Barcelona: Lynx Edicions. ISBN 978-8487334504

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