Exotic Birds of Bhutan
Scroll below to view a Gallery of Photos:
Bhutan's extensive bird list reflects the kingdom's wide range of agro-ecological environments, from subtropical to alpine. Currently 675 species have been recorded in Bhutan. Most widely known are the Black Neck Cranes, a rare and endangered crane. In Bhutan, the Black Neck Crane holds a special place in folklore and Bhutanese hearts. To injure a Black Neck Crane in Bhutan is go to prison for life.
Hundreds flock to the Phobjikha Valley, a glacial valley in a remote area with no electrical power. Here the Black Neck Cranes are conservatory protected and can be viewed. There are many legends and myths about this bird. The Bhutanese call it Thrung Thrung. Black Neck Crane Dancers honor the bird with a festival dance. Other migratory birds as the Pailas' fish eagle, which is considered rare, migrates through Bhutan between Tibet and northern India. This bird is often seen near Wangdi near spring. Often it will be spotted with Ospreys and Pied Avocet. Wintertime brings numerous species down to lower altitudes, including accentors, rose finches, grosbeaks, snow pigeons and pheasants such as the satyrtragopan, the Himalayan monal and the blood pheasant.
Even the casual observer can be sure to see the blue whistling-thrush, yellow blue magpie, the wallcreeper, white capped water redstarts, spotted nutcracker in the pine forest and the red-billed choughs on the roofs on the dzongs. All animals in Bhutan are protected by the Buddhist ethic that prohibits killing. Further protection in the 1995 Forest and Nature Conservation Act defines several species as totally protected. Black Neck Cranes, Monal Pheasant, Peacock, Pheasant, Raven and the Rufous-Necked Hornbill.
Click on thumbnails to see larger pictures.