I recently went on holiday with my family to Mauritius. For those who don't know, Mauritius is a small island located about 2,000km off the southeast coast of Africa. It's not very big as it's only 65km long and 45km wide with a land area of 1,864.8km2. When we arrived, I was surprised at the amount of development and at the extensive monocultures of sugar cane, which take up almost every field and lined nearly all the roads we travelled along.
In this post I want to focus on the bird species that I saw during my visit and following posts will look at some of the other cool wildlife that I managed to see.
First off, one of the most common species that we saw, the Red-whiskered Bulbul. They are charismatic birds and their call was one that you could hear almost constantly throughout the day at our hotel.
|Red-whiskered Bulbul (Pycnonotus jocosus)|
|Mauritius Grey White-eye (Zosterops mauritianus)|
|White-tailed Tropicbird (Phaethon lepturus)|
|Red-tailed Tropicbird (Phaethon rubricauda)|
|Whimbrel (Numenius phaeopus)|
|Green-backed Heron (Butorides virescens)|
|Barred Ground Dove (Geopelia striata)|
|Village Weaver (Ploceus cucullatus)|
|Mauritius Cuckoo-shrike (Coracina typica)|
|Mauritius Paradise Flycatcher (Terpsiphone desolata)|
|Mauritius (Echo) Parakeet (Psittacula eques)|
|Mascarene Swiftlet (Aerodramus francicus) - this bird had been teasing me |
for a number of days by whizzing around our hotel so I was very
pleased to get a decent photo for ID purposes!
|Scaly-breasted Munia (Lonchura punctulata) - I only saw this one individual |
on our holiday despite my book saying they are common on Mauritius. It
was just in the hotel grounds very briefly so I was glad to get a photo!
|Common Myna (Acridotheres tristis) - a common and noisy bird |
that picked up scraps on the beach and around the restaurants.
|Female Village Weaver (Ploceus cucullatus) - much more inconspicuous than the |
males. This one popped up out of a bush right in front of me before flying off.
|Masked Booby (Sula dactylatra) - taken from the boat we went scuba diving |
from. At first I thought it was a Gannet but was ecstatic to review
my pictures and see my first species of booby!
|Yellow-fronted Canary (Crithagra mozambica) - the males were very |
noisy by the swimming pools but usually remained hidden in the vegetation,
except this individual which sat right out in the open for a little while.
|A colour ringed Mauritius Fody (Foudia rubra) being elusive. They |
are colour ringed as part of a study on their breeding habits and success
and so that researchers no the island can tell bloodlines in the field.