I first noticed this beautiful bird sitting on the transmission wires passing over the wheat field. Due to green colour, these looked like small parrots. Then we found it in many places in our neighbourhood like over the water bodies and trees.
This bird is called Green Bee Eater with its scientific name as “Merops orientalis” is an exquisite little bird with bright emerald green plumage. The wings are largely green, sometimes tinted with gold or reddish-brown, and have a black trailing edge.
The bird is fairly gregarious and forages either alone or in small groups. From a perch on a fence, low bush, or sometimes even on cattle, the little green bee-eater takes rapid flight after an insect, seizing its prey and returning to the perch, where it strikes the insect to kill it before devouring it. As its name suggests, the little green bee-eater prefers to prey upon bees, but will also take other insects such as fruit flies and grasshoppers.
It exhibits a peculiar behaviour called predator avoidance which is not common in other bird species. If a predator is concentrating its attention on green bee eaters nest, it will not enter the nest until the predator has looked away. This remarkable behaviour demonstrates that the little green bee-eater aware of where the predator is looking, but also suggests it is aware of the predator’s mental state. This awareness, known as ‘theory of mind’, is typically only exhibited by humans and a few other primate species.
Most of the information is taken from Arkive website and I am thankful to them for this. We took many pictures of this exquisite bird.
Notice the reddish color in the neck of bird in the last picture.
Although the onslaught of building activity is devouring the agricultural lands everywhere,Fortunately there is still greenery around the place I live. There are wild shrubs, fields where crops like wheat, rice, maize and cattle fodder grows and the woods in the reserved areas.
There are a number of birds which live here. One of them is black Drongo, jet black bird. It is an expert insect catcher. It is very aggressive towards crows and other marauders like eagles and falcons. Many other gentle birds try to be close to this bird for protection. Here are some pictures. These pictures have been taken by me while on walks and sitting in the balcony of my home from where the open land is visible.
It is the start of month of September. Still it is very hot during the day but mornings have begun to become cooler. Sometimes very strong breeze welcomes you when you are outdoors.
While going out these days in the morning, I noticed multitudes of butterflies. These although are very agile and usually rarely sit still at one place are seen sitting peacefully on the leaves of shrubs.
There are many species of shrubs growing wildly in our area. Names of many of these are not known to me as will be to others because no one is interested in knowing the names of weeds and shrubs which are of no tangible use to us although nothing exists in nature that is without purpose.
There is one such shrub which grows abundantly here and these days giving different color of flowers. While passing by these shrubs you will be welcomed by strong aromatic smell exuded by these flowers.
Lantana’s aromatic flowers clusters called umbels are a mix of red, orange, yellow, or blue and white florets . Other colors exist as new varieties are being selected. The flowers typically change color as they mature, resulting in inflorescences that are two- or three-colored.
About 150 species exist worldwide. The leaves contain poisonous chemicals but its ripe berries are eaten by many birds. Thus the plant uses very clever strategy to survive and propagate. Animals don’t eat its leaves and birds spread its seeds far and near helping the plant to proliferate. Thus at many places it becomes invasive irritant.
Its one use is that it is a honey plant.
I took some pictures of flowers of different varieties prevalent here.