Birds of MauritiusRead more
Birds constitute, in number of species, the most important group of vertebrates. With more than 10,000 species listed to date, they are twice the number of species of mammals.
They are characterized by their feathers type remige allowing flight. However, some birds, specialized in running like ostriches or swimming like penguins have lost the ability to fly. Other characteristics of birds are the first toe turned backwards and a backward rotation of the forelimbs that allows them to fold them along the body. They are also (for modern birds) toothless.
Birds are everywhere, occupy all environments, under all latitudes. They can be found in the sea as well as on the continents, from the coasts to the mountain tops. They are the animals that venture farthest inside the Antarctic ice cap. They are most often carnivorous, predators of insects or vertebrates, or granivorous.
In the middle of the cane fields, the birds are part of my daily life, they chirp from morning to evening, go from one tree to another, land on the colored flowers, avoid each other or gather!
Everywhere we go, we immortalize these moments when they land near us! Go fly away and listen to them! A few amazing nature parks are awaiting for you in Mauritius! Casela Nature Parks which is found in Cascavelle is one of them.
Another nice place to admire birds on this island is Rivulet Terre Rouge Bird Sanctuary which is located between the Mauritius Freeport Development and the public beach of Baie du Tombeau. Birdwatching at Rivulet might be one of the Mauritian Activities which the Mauritius Tourism Promotion Authority might consider to promote to tourists and to the locals in Mauritius.
The dove or turtle dove Streptopelia chinensis
It is resident and native to southern Asia, from India and Sri Lanka, eastward to southern China and southwestern Asia.
It is commonly called "Cardinal" in Mauritius island. In fact, it is a Madagascar Cardinal (Foudi de Madagascar) The male is very recognizable between September and May when it becomes entirely red and the female looks like a sparrow. The rest of the year, it is streaked brown and beige with greenish reflections on the top, beige on the bottom. It is then confused with the female sparrow.
The Condé, Bulbul Orpheus or Mauritius Blackbird
This bird with black skirt is native to India. It is adorned with a black crest on the head with some small red feathers that highlight its black eye. The male and the female both wear the same plumage. The Conde is essentially a fruit eater and does a lot of damage to plantations and fruit crops. As a result, it is not very popular with farmers and is even considered a pest.
The Striated Heron
It is very present in the Garden of Pamplemousses. On this picture, the heron waits for the small fish to come near to eat the breadcrumbs and then seize them very quickly.
Like anywhere in the world, deforestation is causing major harm to our local Mauritian bird species however some eco-friendly hotels are more and more integrating sustainable green spaces in order to reduce the progressive extinction of our birds.