Wednesday, August 22, 2007

Red Vented Bulbul

Red-vented Bulbul

Red Vented Bulbul

Red Vented Bulbul image coutsey:

Blacklisted by many nations but this little ruffian is unfazed.

The red-vented Bulbuls are comparatively very small birds which rarely exceed 8 inches is length; but the miniature size does not in any way lessen their invasive, quarrelsome and aggressive postures. Recent sighting of a pair of Red-vented Bulbul in Auckland raised alarm bell through out the area and people were asked to shoot those birds at sight; that is clout of RVBs (Red-vented Bulbuls)! They not only destroy crops (annual loss of crops in Hawaii due to these little birds is estimated to be $ 30,000) but harm the indigenous birds there. While they are mere pests for the farmers for the far away; Rvbs are not so in their native land – the Indian Peninsula.

Out of iron-bars, to rule the roost!

For scientists they are Pycnonotus cafer belonging to the family pycnonotidae of the giant order passerine birds (in which the house sparrows are included). It is a native of Indian subcontinent but of late they have immigrated to various other parts like Fiji, New Zealand etc (by getting released from cages). These birds gained immediate notoriety in the host countries by causing damage of their farm produces and eliminating the native species of birds there.

Red ventral parts.

Red-vented bulbuls reach the length of about 8 inches in length (smaller than a mynah), their head and neck sport glossy black color. Upper portion of their back has smoke-brown and white scale like markings. Their white tipped tails are dressed in a shade of dark brown color which turns lighter as progresses to the anterior. The very easily distinguishable crimson patch at the base of the tail is the reason for the name of the bird – the name red vented bulbul.

Loved by the natives.

Red-vented bulbuls are natives of India and after crows Bulbuls are the most popular birds of this part of the land. Here these noisy, active and mischievous little birds are hot favorites. They live among the villages and close to human habitations hence people are familiar with them and love them for its lovable antics and attractive call notes. North Indians love bulbuls so much that they address their loves mates as ‘bulbuls’ to express affection!

The wake up call from the grandma.

Here farmers love to wake up hearing the call of the bulbul’s ‘drink-up, quick-drink’ call it may be felt that the birds are asking lazy people to wake up and go to work instead of wasting time in the bed; like a nagging grandma. Many poets who have written songs about the smartness of these birds and Indian film-songs too have many references of Bulbuls.

The Rvbs are usually found in pairs (there is a strong bond between the pairs) hence young couples who travel together are compared to bulbuls by their elders. Rvbs seldom live and feed in flocks; but when fresh rain come and winged termites fly around they too join in the fray of birds to feed on them; otherwise for them tow is company and three is crowd.

Often foolish!

These mischievous birds are not very cautious in guarding their nests as in the case of other birds, they build it in the shape of cups on small shrubs with dry grass and fibers. Inside of the nests are lined with cotton or such smooth fibers. Their uncontrolled chattering often attracts predators landing these birds in trouble, yet bulbuls go on chattering like fools inviting problems.

Friend of the trees.

The Bulbuls are of use to horticulturists (those who grow tree-plantations) as their digestive juices give a trigger for the seeds to germinate and these birds help in dispersal of seeds. Seeds of trees like sandal will not germinate unless the fruits are eaten by bulbuls and deposited at the dropping.

Buddha and Bulbul.

There is one old story in India connecting Buddha and Bulbuls. Gautam Buddha was meditating under a large banyan tree for a long period seeking the root cause of sorrows that haunt human beings. While on meditation he watched all the environments surrounding the tree like squirrels, birds, flies, snakes, pedestrians who passed by etc.

Never be afraid of the people.

It was the chattering and ever-active bulbuls which attracted him the most, while all human beings were depressed these little birds were never moody or sad they kept on chattering! Buddha gave a message to bulbuls “Never be afraid of the people whether they are rich or poor, wake them up in the morning, give them company by your endless chattering while they work on the field, sing again at the fall of the night this may be my message”.

The message.

Do you know what these little birds always chatter, it is the message Sri Buddha has entrusted it to tell to the people “By conquering self, lust and wealth, people will see the Eternal Beauty and know that deliverance lies within them selves”

The irony!

The bulbuls are delivering the message of Buddha and many countries have banned them from entering in their land, even shoot at sight orders are their against these poor little messengers, what an irony!

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brufus said...

Thanks for visting my blog and for you words.
I'd be so happy if you propose me some indian song, I've never posted one!
Congratulations for your one, has a lot of interstings posts.
see you.

Márcio Melânia said...

Thanks for your visit in one of my blogs.
You have a nice one here too.

God bless you.

Marcio Melania

Tribunadiez said...

Agradezco tu visita. Desde Chaco, Argentina un gran saludo y lamento no sabe inglés lo suficiente para poder leer un blog que aparece como sumamente interesante.
un abrazo