A Photographic Guide to the Birds of India (Including Nepal, Sri Lanka, Bhutan, Pakistan

and Bangladesh)

A Photographic Guide to the Birds of India (Including Nepal, Sri Lanka, Bhutan, Pakistan and Bangladesh)

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Item Code: IDL052
Author: Amano Samarpan
Publisher: Wisdom Tree Publications
Edition: 2006
ISBN: 8183280293
Pages: 168 (Illustrated Throughout In Color)
Cover: Paperback
Other Details: 7.1" X 4.8”
I will remember my first day in India. Lying on a bed in Delhi trying to sleep off lag, I was greeted by the sound of House Sparrow outside; after a while, they could be heard inside the room and then I felt landing on my prone body, using me as one of their perches as they played around. There are not nearly so many House Sparrows in Delhi today yet the gentle wisdom of the rishi, sages, and the Buddha seems to have rubbed off on the avian kingdom and I would like to think all the birds who appear in this book, some of whom were very obliging.

The clamorous Reed Warbler is one who stands out. Hearing him or her in some undergrowth near the Yamuna river that runs past Delhi, I replied to the running sounds coming fourth and after a while established a kind of rapport with the little creature until silence fell. It seemed contact was lost until the bird suddenly appeared with a large fly in its mouth, an offering perhaps. Ungratefully, it seemed, I responded with a couple of grab shots before the bird disappeared. After that, although I often heard it, never again did it respond, in spite of my returning the next day and the day after.

It is not easy to define a common bird. One can take into account the actual numbers of the bird (this would limit common to the smaller-sized species), how easy it is to see the bird (larger birds are likely to figure here) or how widespread they are within the region. A combination of these and be able to identify many of the species he or she sees from this book.

Identification is often something of an art and not the only reason for seeing birds. Often the sheer magnificence of the feathered population and our ability to respond to them is what actually matters.

Understanding this Book
This book, originally titled ‘Birds of India’, has been adapted for Sri Lanka.

The birds in this book are mostly widespread breeding residents in India and Sri Lanka although some winter visitors have been included. The taxonomy used is based on An Annotated Checklist of the Birds of the Oriental Region by T. Inskipp, N. Lindsey and W. Duckworth (1996) yet reference has also been made to the more recent Birds of South Asia by P. Rasmussen and J. Anderton (2005)

English name (too left)

English names have been in common usage ever since the days of modern ornithology in India and Sri Lanka. However, there is now some disagreement over which names to use and hence more than one may be given. As defined by The International Union for the Conservation of Nature and Natural resources (IUCN) Red List, vulnerable species are marked in red while near threatened species are in magenta.

Length in centimeters (from tip of beak to end of tail)

The measurements are approximate but give some idea of the size. As a reference, this book is 7.5 inches (19 cms) high by 4.7 inches (12 cms) wide.

Sinhala and Hindi names

Some Kinhala and Hindi names are merely alliterations of English ones. There are however genuine Sinhala and Hindi names a few of which come from the Sanskrit language.

Not all the birds found in this book are found in Sri Lanka. Please refer to page 158-163 for local Sinhala names of the birds.


All photographs have been made in the wild (often wildlife parks) with due consideration for the bird’s welfare; frightened birds seldom make good photographs!

Text relating to the bird in question

The brief description gives the salient features and habits of the bird concerned.

Other photographs

Many species have subspecies while the birds vary in plumage according to sex, age and the season.

Descriptions of photographs (in italics alongside some photographs)

Helps to further identify the different appearance of a species.

Back of the Book

This book is an excellent photographic guide to the birds of the Indian subcontinent. The eye-catching photographs that flawlessly capture the details of each bird’s beauty are accompanied by crisp descriptions and brief identification hints.

Amino Samarpan studied photography at Duckspool in the UK. Drawn to India by its spiritual heritage, he discovered meditations and the ability of birds to bring one down to earth. His work regularly features in books and magazines.

Bird Topographyviii
Understanding this book1
150 Birds in Focus2
About Birdwatching152
Birds on the Internet156
The Eggylogue160
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