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Endemic Bird Day 2015

9 May 2015

EBD 2015


Locations of birdlists uploaded to eBird during Endemic Bird Day. Click for a larger picture.

Locations of birdlists uploaded to eBird during Endemic Bird Day. Click for a larger picture.

Braving the heat of May, 176 intrepid eBirders went out to look for endemic (and other) species on Endemic Bird Day, in the process uploading 620 birdlists containing over 11,000 bird observations. In all, 567 species were recorded from India, which is nearly 50% of all ‘non-rarities’ found in India, and much higher  percentage of those species present in the country in May! Of the 225 species (excel file) we have that are endemic to South Asia, 133 were recorded on this single day. The most frequent endemics reported were White-cheeked Barbet (193 observations), Ashy Prinia (148), Jungle Babbler (124), Indian Robin (127) and Indian Peafowl (79). At the other end of the spectrum, there were single records each of Bugun Liocichla, Andaman Masked-Owl, Laggar Falcon, Painted Bush-Quail, Black-and-rufous Flycatcher and 19 other endemics.

Panchapakesan Jeganathan (45 endemics) and TR Shankar Raman (44), birding in the Anamalai hills of Tamil Nadu, recorded by far the highest number of endemic species during the EBD — that’s 20% of all South Asian endemics! They also ended up with the highest overall species tally, but many others were close behind.

Endemic Bird Day was planned to coincide with the Global Big Day, a worldwide effort to document as many species as possible in a single 24-hour period. Across the world, some 6,000 species were recorded on 9th May by over 13,000 birders from 127 countries! India’s overall species tally (567 species)  puts us in 9th place, if you compare countries in number of species recorded — very respectable indeed!

We hope you enjoyed participating in this first Endemic Bird Day; and see you again next year. In the meantime, keep birding and uploading your lists to better document and monitor our wild birds!


Here is the key to identifying all 26 endemics depicted in this wonderful illustration by Rohan Chakravarty, For #3, we also accept Western Tragopan; for #21 we also accept Sikkim Wedge-billed Wren-babbler, Rufous-throated Wren-babbler, and Rusty-throated Wren-babbler (all endemics to S Asia). For #24 we also accept Chestnut-breasted Partridge. Remember, all these species are endemic to South Asia (excel file here). So, how did you score??

A total of 63 birders tried their hand in this contest, of which 12 made a perfect score! These are: Abhishek Gulshan, Bhagyashree Ingle, Biswajit Chakdar, Manjula Ravi, Rajive Das, Rajneesh Suvarna, Ria Sarkar, Rithika Fernandes, Saurabh Sawant, Sweedle Cerejo, Tina Fernandes, Vaishali Jathar. Congratulations to them all!


The Endemic Bird Day is a day to go looking for endemic birds. Endemic birds are those whose distribution is restricted to a defined area, in this case South Asia (Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Bhutan, India, Maldives, Nepal, Pakistan, Sri Lanka). There are more species endemic to our region than you think! Take a look at this excel file, which lists all species endemic (or near-endemic) to South Asia. The file also contains the number of observations of each species uploaded to eBird so far.

Map of locations that will be covered during Endemic Bird Day 2015. If you have not registered (and so your location does not appear on the map), please don’t worry and do go out birding on 9th May!

A lot of birding activity occurs during the winter months, when one can see lots of species thanks to the large numbers of migrants that come south to us. But now most winter visitors have left for their breeding grounds, and it is a good time to focus on our resident and endemic species, which are preparing for breeding. These species are truly our very own; let’s get together and document them, from common and widespread endemics like the Grey Francolin to rare and isolated species like the Wayanad Laughing Thrush. The birdlists gathered during the EBD will give an annual snapshot of the distribution and breeding of these endemic species. In addition, the EBD falls on the same date as the Global Big Day, where birders all over the world will be out documenting their sightings.

1. Plan your day to see as many endemics species as possible. In India, areas of high endemism include the Western Ghats, the Eastern Himalayas and the Andaman & Nicobar Islands. This does not mean that other areas are to be ignored! Many common species in other regions are also endemics. If you can, make a special effort to look for endemics with restricted ranges, which are often poorly reported on eBird. But do remember that our focus on endemics does not mean that non-endemic species should be overlooked! May can be very hot in many parts of the country, so plan your day according to your comfort and convenience. Even a single 15-min birdlist is an excellent contribution; or perhaps birding sessions in the early morning and then late afternoon?

2. Tell us (through this registration form) where you intend to go birding on that day so that we can maintain an updated map of survey locations. Tell your other birding friends about the event by sending them to link to this page, or via Twitter (#EndemicBirdDay & #GlobalBigDay) or the Facebook event page.

3. On the 9th of May, go birding and upload your birdlists to eBird. The birdlists should contain all the species you see, not just endemics, and should ideally contain counts of each species. This allows a comparison of endemics with other species. As during the GBBC and other counts, please maintain and upload separate lists for each distinct location you visit. There is no minimum duration for each list. Do also record any and all evidence of breeding for all species, endemic or not! Please upload your birdlists by 12th May.

Join hundreds of birders from all over the country in the first Endemic Bird Day! How many endemic species can we collectively find?

Additional reading:
– Details of the 12 Endemic Bird Areas (EBAs) in India, from BirdLife International.
Endemic Birds of India, by Girish Jathar and Asad Rahmani (pdf, 700kb)

Event Summary

9 May 2015

Leave a Comment

36 thoughts on “Endemic Bird Day 2015

  • brodie

    Great projcet, I’ll be joining from Periyar.
    FYI there’s no link to this page from the birdcount.in front page or events page…

    • Bird Count India

      Thank you Sir. If you can spare a few seconds to register your name on this form that would be very helpful. Just so that we have an idea of which areas in the country are likely to be covered.

    • Bird Count India

      Thanks for the question. One idea is to try and find as many of those unique species as you can. Possible?

    • Praveen J

      Hope you had a look at the list of endemics (225+) – all South Asia endemics and near-endemics are targeted – not necessarily endemic to Indo-Gangetic plains. I hope it will be quite a handful.

  • Uday Pandurang Vaze

    Okay I will visit the nearest grassland to find few of the endemic bird…Uday Pandurang Vaze SRUSHTI VAIBHAV Birla Road Ramdas Peth Akola 444001 Cell No. 09823182466 email nfudayv@gmail.com

    Please send me more material on this…

    The designs for banners…do’s and dont’s etc.

  • Dr. P. S. Thakker

    I have data of bird census in the Districts of Ahmedabad, Mehsana, Sabarkantha, Banaskantha, Patan, Panchmahals, Patan and few places in Porbandar district of Gujarat probably from the year 1987 to 2000. I will try to give info. but it will take time.

    • Bird Count India

      That’s very interesting, Sir — and very kind of you to offer to share the information. In what format do you have the data? Is it perhaps already entered into Excel or some such form? Please let us know if we can do anything to help. You can email us at birdcountindia@gmail.com.

  • Dr.G.A.Wagh

    I will participate From Amravati,Maharashtra in E-Bird endemic bird count programme on 9 may with our WECS, Amravati Members.

    • Bird Count India

      Thank you Dr Shaju. Even a 15 min birdlist in the morning, while it’s still cool, would be a wonderful contribution — if you have a bit of spare time!

  • Nishant N Shukla

    Great Event, Will participate form Jaipur. Birding at Nahargarh Biological Park in the Afternoon session.

  • mohit aggarwal

    57 species in the morning in Pangot by the team of Jungle Lore Birding Lodge (Ganesh Adhikari & Gitanjali Katlam)

    Bird list Pangot – 9th May Endemic Bird Day
    Scaly Thrush
    Grey-winged Blackbird
    Himalayan Woodpecker
    Common Pigeon
    Common Kestrel
    Black Francolin
    Slaty-headed parakeet
    Rufous-bellied woodpecker
    Brown fronted woodpecker
    Hill Partridge
    Larger Cuckoo
    Indian Cuckoo
    Collared Owlet
    Great Barbet
    Grey-headed Woodpecker
    Long -tailed Minivet
    Ashy Drongo
    Maroon Oriole
    Black-headed Jay
    Eurasian Jay
    Red-billed Bluemagpie
    Large -billed Crow
    Green-backed Tit
    Black -lored Tit
    Black-throated Tit
    Coal Tit
    Red -rumped Swallow
    Barn Swallow
    Himalayan Bulbul
    Striated Prinia
    Blyth’s Reed Warbler
    Hume’s Warbler
    Black-faced Warbler
    Grey-hooded Warbler
    Rusty-cheeked Scimitar Babbler
    Striated Laughingthrush
    Chestnut Crown Laughingthrush
    Blue Winged Siva
    White-browed Shrike-babbler
    Rufous Sibia
    White- tailed nuthatch
    Bar-tailed Treecreeper
    Blue Whistling Thrush
    Tickell’s Thrush
    Grey Bushchat
    Verditer Flycatcher
    Ultramarine Flycatcher
    Spotted Dove
    Black Bulbul
    Oriental Cuckoo
    Oriental White-eye
    Common Rosefinch
    Grey Nightjar
    Koklass Pheasant
    White-throated Laughingthrush
    Streaked Laughingthrush
    Russet Sparrow

  • brodie

    Well I uploaded the list, but a few hours late, there was no internet. Lots of good endemics, though! 14 South Indian endemics recorded.