The Mystery Bird “Yellow-Billed Oxpecker”

The yellow-billed oxpecker “Buphagus africanus” is a beautiful passerine bird in the starling and myna family, Sturnidae. The name “oxpecker” is related to their habit of perching on large wild and domestic mammals. The yellow-billed oxpecker is 20 cm long and has plain brown upperparts and head, buff underparts and a pale rump. In a day an adult bird will take more than 100 engorged female Boophilus decoloratus ticks or 13,000 larvae. It frequently occurs in association with wild and domestic large mammals. The species often roosts in trees close to these animals, or even on buffaloes’ back at night. The Yellow-billed oxpeckers live in small flocks and can be found at sea-level or in mountains as high as 9,800 feet. These African mystery birds are engaged in a rare behavior, even nesting on the back of a live Cape buffalo.
Some ornithologists regard the oxpeckers to be a separate family, the Buphagidae. It is least common in the extreme east of its range where it overlaps with the r…

The Crested Kingfisher (Megaceryle lugubris) Male

The Crested Kingfisher is (Megaceryle Lugubris, Other common names: Himalayan Pied Kingfisher) a very large kingfisher that is mostly native to Southern Asia and Japan.  The Crested Kingfisher is a species of bird in the Alcedinidae family. This bird is mainly found in Mountain Rivers and larger rivers in the foothills of mountains. The bird is forms a species complex with the other three Megaceryle species. It is resident in the Himalayas and mountain foothills of northern India, Bangladesh, northern Indochina, Southeast Asia, Japan and Russia. This eye-catching kingfisher is easily recognized from its shaggy crest when at rest. The upper body is barred black and white and has a white collar. The distinctive large kingfisher has long crest feathers and average size is 41-43, 230-280 g.

The large black and white kingfisher with evenly barred wings and tail, and lacks a supercilium and has a spotted breast, which is sometimes mixed with rufous. This kingfisher has loud “ket ket” in flight, also loud “ping”, deep croaks between paired birds, and raucous grating. The kingfisher likes to eat fish, and crayfish, and perches on an overhanging branch, partly submerged log or rock, occasionally bobbing head. A notable decline has been observed in China, due to habitat destruction. Moreover, it is not globally threatened. Although widespread and common in some areas, but numbers have declined sharply during 20th century in Hokkaido, and also in Hong Kong. Whether traveling by wing or by wheel, this attractive kingfisher is pleased to perch anywhere in your home. Therefore, lifelike markings are meticulously painted with latex enamel on poplar wood that has been carved with a band saw. Each is unique and will vary.

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