Sunday, May 21, 2023 07:45 [IST]

Last Update: Sunday, May 21, 2023 02:16 [IST]

The Bird Journal


Recently evening we had an unprecedented late afternoon Nor’wester as well as heavy rainfall witnessed in Kolkata (West Bengal, India). Although the unexpected rain drenched, everyone who were outside the shelter of the room; but, it was a new welcome evening shower as the city has been baking under the summer sun with temperature is fluctuating between 40–43°C.

I was outside like others, but on my way back home; under a big Gul Mohar (Delinix regia, Fabaceae) tree (also called Red flame or Flamboyant tree in English), I found an almost partly destroyed bird nest. The nest must have been blown out of the tree due to the strong gust that we experienced in the evening. I did not see any intact or damaged eggs or chicks, lying close by, and was not able to identify the species of the bird who made this nest. It could be an abundant bird nest that has fallen of the tree during the Nor’wester; and may not have been currently inhabited by a breeding couple and their eggs or chicks.

The most interesting point of my observation has been the materials used by the bird in the construction of this particular nest as captured in my mobile camera picture attached below for your kind perusal. One could see the birds have used conventional grasses, twigs, soft branches, soft stems and midribs of leaves; along with very fine variously coloured metal wires intertwined carefully together with the plant materials to build this particular nest. The wires have been used, in such an engineering precision that they have nicely secured the basic foundation structure of the nest by providing extra tensile strength and rigidity to the bowl shaped nest structure. The birds must have located the swears in somewhere nearby construction site and has ingeniously use them in the building of the nest and pioneered an engineering strategy to make a very stable and efficient nest structure that I have ever seen before.

I have compared a Google Image picture of a  conventional bird nest holding chicks with that of this wire meshed net to present how effective and secure the structure is. Our favourite friend has been extremely genius in integrating both bio-degradable, eco-friendly construction materials along with human-produced (anthropogenic) non-biodegradable, synthetic materials to build a highly secure and stable nest. This is an indication how intelligent our co-inhabitants of this planet are than we are comfortable in recognizing.


Sikkim at a Glance

  • Area: 7096 Sq Kms
  • Capital: Gangtok
  • Altitude: 5,840 ft
  • Population: 6.10 Lakhs
  • Topography: Hilly terrain elevation from 600 to over 28,509 ft above sea level
  • Climate:
  • Summer: Min- 13°C - Max 21°C
  • Winter: Min- 0.48°C - Max 13°C
  • Rainfall: 325 cms per annum
  • Language Spoken: Nepali, Bhutia, Lepcha, Tibetan, English, Hindi