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Oriental Darter - BirdForum Opus

Alternative name: Snakebird

Breeding Plumage in a Courting Pair
Photo © by Alok Tewari
Keoladeo National Park, India, July-2016
Anhinga melanogaster

Identification

85–97 cm (33½-38¼ in); A tall cormorant-like species

  • Very long neck
  • White lateral neck stripe

Male

  • Glossy black overall plumage with white streaks

Females and immature birds are browner.

Similar species

African Darter and Australasian Darter

Distribution

Photo © by Tribhuz
Chitwan National Park, Nepal, March 2017

From Iraq east to Pakistan, India and to south-eastern Asia, Malay Archipelago and Philippine Islands.

Taxonomy

This is a monotypic species.
It was formerly lumped with African Darter and Australasian Darter.

Habitat

Clean, shallow water in lakes, fresh and alkaline; and big rivers.

Behaviour

Often swims with only the neck above water.

Diet

Photo © by Joe Pan

They spear their prey underwater (mainly fish but also other aquatic animals e.g. water snakes, frogs, crustaceans etc.) as they swim.

Breeding

They construct a stick nest in a tree; the clutch consists of 3-6 eggs. They often nest with herons, egrets and cormorants.

Vocalisation

Listen in an external program Listen in an external program
Recording by Alok Tewari
Keoladeo National Park, India, Dec-2015
An individual sitting on a dry branch, in front, called twice as we were trying to capture perfect sunset.

Gallery

Click images to see larger version

References

  1. Clements, J. F., T. S. Schulenberg, M. J. Iliff, D. Roberson, T. A. Fredericks, B. L. Sullivan, and C. L. Wood. 2018. The eBird/Clements checklist of birds of the world: v2018. Downloaded from http://www.birds.cornell.edu/clementschecklist/download/
  2. Handbook of the Birds of the World Alive (retrieved March 2017)

Recommended Citation

External Links


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