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  • Writer's pictureNidhi Ramasubramanian

Long-Tailed Shrike

This large shrike is very noisy giving loud and screeching calls. Adults have a dark face, and a gray upper back. Orange is scattered on the lower back and flanks. This found is found all across Asia. It usually inhabits open areas.

When me and my family were on the Bandipur safari, we got a call from another safari driver saying he had spotted a tiger. As our driver went speeding across the forest to reach the spot, my sister astonishingly spotted this bird flitting above us. She told the driver to stop, but as we were speeding so fast, we stopped around 20m away from where it was and lost it. However, when we were returning from the safari, we surprisingly saw the bird again near the same spot.

The Long-tailed Shrike eats a wide variety of prey. They catch fish, eat small snakes and even engages in kleptoparasitism which is snatching food from other birds (exactly how you steal food from your siblings). It also catches insects and plucks fruits from the neem tree and impales in a stick to eat (like a kebab...).

Many Long-tailed Shrikes also play with each other, fighting with each other for the best spot to perch. They mostly perch on wires.



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