top of page
Black Drongo
(කලු කවුඩා)
Edolius macrocercus

The famous Black Drongos from the northern part of the country were photographed both in Mannar and in Jaffna. They are a fearless bird and on one occasion, I saw one attack a Brahminy kite and chasing it away. The white spot on the base of the beak is what is used to identify them. The 1st year juveniles have a few white fringes on the belly.

Black Drongo
Grey Drongo
(අලු කවුඩා)
Edolius leucophaeus

Based on the deeply forked tail, a brighter crimson eye and as there is no white mark at the base of the beak, I believe this is a Grey Drongo. The colour of the feathers also seems a bit lighter than the Black Frongo.


I wish I took more pictures when I came across one in Yoda Wewa, Mannar to identify beyond doubt. 

Doubtful identification
Grey Drongo
Greater Racket-tailed Drongo / Racket-tailed Drongo (මහ කවුඩා)
Dicrurus paradiseus

Yet to capture image

Greater Racket-tailed Drongo
Sri Lanka Crested Drongo / Ceylon Crested Drongo
Dicrurus lophorinus

The endemic gangster of the rain forest, he leads the rally call for creating the famous bird flocks of the rain forest. Being one of the bravest of the birds, the other species rally to their call and they lead the pack through the forest. He is able to mimic lots of bird and animal calls making him unique in the bird world.


Seen and photographed at Sinharaja rain forest and in low light inside the thick canopy.

Sri Lanka Crested Drongo
White-bellied Drongo
Edolius caerulescens

A common urban resident, these superb vocalists can be seen even in the heart of the city. 

1st to 3rd image are from Rathnapura. Images 4  to 13 are from the Thalangama area where a pair of them were raising a family and incubating eggs. They were very protective of the nest and chased away any birds who dared to stray close. Such remarkable birds. Next encounter from Bodhinagala - Images 14 and 15.

White-bellied Drongo
Sri Lanka Blue Magpie / Ceylon Blue Magpie
(ශ්‍රි ලංකා කැහිබෙල්ලා)
Urocissa ornata

These natives are perhaps the most famous indigenous birds of Sri Lanka. Related to the crow family, they are known to be super mischievous. The first pair was photographed at the entrance to the Sinharaja rain forest.

From image 10 onwards, it's from a subsequent trip again to Sinharaja. What a beautiful bird and in my view nicely captures the beauty of my island. 

Sri Lanka Blue Magpie
Brahminy Starling / Brahminy Myna
(බමුණු ශරිකාවා)
Sturnia pagodarum

Seen at Yala National Park and photographed with my point-and-shoot. We were very fortunate to find a pair but stupid drivers at Yala thought we are looking at a Leopard and drove in very fast. The birds flew away. Moron drivers.

Brahminy Starling
Rosy Starling
(රෝස ශරිකාවා)
Pastor roseus

An irregular winter visitor, I came across them first in Mannar in 2018 but couldn't take decent photographs. Then in January 2019, I came across them in large numbers both in Mannar and in Jaffna.

These social, loud yet graceful birds were down in large numbers forming large flocks of thousands in the evening. Came across a large flock taking a bath in Vankalai which was a superb sight. 

Rosy Starling
Chestnut-tailed Starling / Grey-headed Starling (තම්බල පෙඳ ශරිකාවා)
Sturnia malabarica

Yet to capture image

Chestnut-tailed Starling
White-faced Starling / Ceylon White-headed Starling (ශ්‍රි ලංකා වතසුදු ශරිකාවා)
Sturnornus albofrontatus

Rare, endangered and endemic, this bird is only seen in the Sinharaja rainforest. The photographs were taken from a far distance and are a bit blurred.

They hardly come down from the canopy. Had to try a few times to even get a decent photograph.

White-faced Starling
Sri Lanka Myna / Ceylon Hill Myna
(ශ්‍රි ලංකා සැළලිහිණියා)
Gracula ptilogenys

This beautiful endemic bird had a nest in the tree trunk and probably had little ones in it. The parents made frequent visits to the nest. I wish I spent more time and got better pictures.

Sri Lanka Myna
Lesser Hill Myna / Common Hill Myna
Gracula indica

This beautiful bird was photographed inside the bird’s enclosure inside the Dehiwala zoo. Once a common site, they are increasingly rare to spot in the countryside. I came across a whole gang of them in Ella but they were too high up in the tree canopy I couldn’t get any good shots.

Lesser Hill Myna
Common Myna
Acridotheres tristis

First seen at MillenniumIT campus grounds. A very common bird in urban areas as they have adapted superbly to living among human dwellings.

Images 3 and 4 are from Baththaramulla where these ones were expertly managing a pile of garbage. Images 5 and 6 are from near Thalangama lake.

Common Myna
Purple-backed Starling / Daurian Starling
(දම්පිට ශරිකවා)
Agropsar sturninus

Yet to capture image

Vagrant species
Purple-backed Starling
Black-headed Bunting
(කලු හිස බුන්ටියා)
Emberiza melanocephala

Yet to capture image

Vagrant species
Black-headed Bunting
Red-headed Bunting
(රතු හිස බුන්ටියා)
Emberiza bruniceps

Yet to capture image

Vagrant species
Red-headed Bunting
Grey-necked Bunting
Emberiza buchanani

Yet to capture image

Vagrant species
Grey-necked Bunting
bottom of page