Monday, July 13, 2009

Chambal Diary: 6. River Lapwing

Previously aptly named the "Spur-winged Plover", the River Lapwing is a striking species with real spurs on its wings (see above) used during duels with fellow River Lapwings. These distinct more-or-less black-and-white birds share the riverside at Chambal with two other resident lapwing species - the Red- and Yellow-wattled Lapwings.

River Lapwings, as their name suggests, are found primarily along rivers. They find their food - insects, and other creepy-crawlies - in the sand and on vegetation along the rivers.

This species is adapted very well to river systems. They lay and incubate their eggs in a shallow scoop in the sand on river-banks and islands, much like their neighbours the terns and skimmers. Above, a lapwing incubates eggs beside a sleeping Comb Duck.

They are watchful parents. Here, one adult watches cautiously after ensuring that its chicks are well hidden among the scattered rocks on the island.

3-4 eggs are laid in the simple scoop - above a lapwing adjusts the eggs in the nest. Eggs are cryptically coloured: if the incubating bird were to walk away, it is exceedingly difficult to spot them on the sand.

ll photos taken in the National Chambal Sanctuary, Uttar Pradesh on 9 Apr 2009.)

1 comment:

  1. The birds are beautiful.
    You are lucky to be with nature.
    Keep it up.