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Red Vented Bulbul

Red Vented Bulbul
Photo Information
Copyright: Kedar Kulkarni (kedarkulkarni) Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 234 W: 0 N: 346] (1459)
Genre: Animals
Medium: Color
Date Taken: 2010-03-06
Categories: Birds
Exposure: f/5.7, 1/250 seconds
More Photo Info: [view]
Photo Version: Original Version
Date Submitted: 2010-09-14 1:11
Viewed: 2895
Points: 10
[Note Guidelines] Photographer's Note
Hi Friends,

This is a common bird in our area and it comes lives near human societies. Mostly it makes nest in the windows, over the tube lights and near lamp posts. This has a smaller crest as compared to the Red whiskered Bulbul .

The Red-vented Bulbul (Pycnonotus cafer) is a member of the bulbul family of passerine birds. It is resident breeder in tropical southern Asia from India and Sri Lanka east to Burma and southwestern China. It has been introduced and has established itself in the wild in many Pacific islands including Fiji, Samoa, Tonga, and Hawaii. It has also established itself in parts of Dubai, the United Arab Emirates and New Zealand. It is included among the world's worst invasive alien species.[2]

The Red-vented Bulbul is easily identified by its short crest giving the head a squarish appearance. The body is dark brown with a scaly pattern while the head is darker or black. The rump is white while the vent is red. The black tail is tipped in white. The Himalayan races have a more prominent crest and are more streaked on the underside. The Race intermedius of the Western Himalayas has a black hood extending to the mid-breast. Race bengalensis of Central and Eastern Himalayas and the Gangetic plain has dark hood without scales with dark streaks on the lower belly. Race stanfordi of the South Assam hills is similar to intermedius. The desert race humayuni has a paler brown mantle. The nominate race cafer is found in Peninsular India. Northeast Indian race wetmorei is between cafer, humayuni and bengalensis. about 20 cm in length, with a long tail. Sri Lankan race haemorrhous (=haemorrhousus[6]) has a dark mantle with narrow pale edges. Race humayuni is known to hybridize with Pycnonotus leucogenys and these hybrids have been named by the race magrathi which have pale rumps and yellow-orange or pink vents.[9] In Eastern Myanmar there is hybridization with Pycnonotus aurigaster.[5]

Sexes are similar in plumage, but young birds are duller than adults.[5] The typical call has been transcribed as ginger beer but a number of pit like single note calls are also produced. Their alarm calls are usually responded to by many other species of bird.[10]

Melanistic as well as albinistic individuals have been noted

Habitat and distribution
This is a bird of dry scrub, open forest, plains and cultivated lands.[5] In its native range it is rarely found in mature forests. A study based on 54 localities in India concluded that vegetation is the single most important factor that determines the distribution of the species.[15]

It has been introduced into Hawaii, Fiji and New Zealand. The were introduced to Samoa in 1943 and became common on Upolu by 1957. Red-vented Bulbuls were introduced to Fiji around 1903 by indentured labourers from India.[16] They established on the Tongan islands of Tongatapu and Niuafo'ou. They were introduced into Melbourne around 1917 but were not seen after 1942.[17] They established in Auckland in the 1950s but were exterminated.[18] They prefer the dry lowland regions in these introduced regions.[19][20] They are considered as pests because of their habit of damaging fruit crops. Methiocarb and ziram have been used to protect cultivated Dendrobium orchids in Hawaii from damage by these birds. These birds learn to avoid the repellent chemicals.

Behaviour and ecology
Red-vented bulbuls feed mainly on fruits, petals of flowers,[25] nectar, insects and occasionally geckos.[26][27][28][29][30][31] They have also been seen feeding on the leaves of Medicago sativa.[22]

Red-vented bulbuls build their nests in bushes at a height of around 2-3 m (7-10 ft; two or three eggs is a typical clutch. Nests are occasionally built inside houses[32][33] or in a hole in a mud bank.[34] In one instance, a nest was found on a floating mat of Water hyacinth leaves[35] and another observer noted a pair nesting inside a regularly used bus.[36] Nests in tree cavities have also been noted.[37]

They breed from June to September. The eggs are pale-pinkish with spots of darker red more dense at the broad end.[38] They are capable of having multiple clutches in a year. Nests are small flat cups made of small twigs but sometimes making use of metal wires.[39] The eggs hatch after about 14 days.[10] Both parents feed the chicks and on feeding trips wait for the young to excrete, swallowing the faecal sacs produced.[40] The Pied Crested Cuckoo is a brood parasite of this species.[41] Fires, heavy rains and predators are the main causes of fledgeling mortality in scrub habitats in southern India.[42]

boreocypriensis, Argus, goldyrs, CeltickRanger has marked this note useful
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Namastay brother Kedar,

Flawless capture of this wire-beauty:) MF!
Great DOF/POV and fine composition too.
TFS and have a nice day!


  • Great 
  • PeterZ Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 5137 W: 166 N: 13121] (49139)
  • [2010-09-14 2:15]

Hello Kedar,
Nice photo of this Red-vented Bulbul in beautiful natural colours, moderate sharpness and a good POV and composition.

  • Great 
  • Argus Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 5038 W: 260 N: 15594] (50626)
  • [2010-09-14 6:38]

Hello Kedar,
Pity the pose on the wire does not reaveal the red vent, otherwise the composition, natural colours, lighting and sharpness contribute to a nice capture of the Red-vented Bulbul.
Thanks and kind regards,

This is a nice shot Kedar!
I like the light and shade effect here!

hello Kedar

excellent close-shot of the Red-vented Bulbul, with fine POV
and framing, fine focus excellent sharpness and details,
the catch-light render the photo more beautiful,
i also love the way it is framed TFS


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