Nilgiri Blackbird (Turdus simillimus simillimus)

The Nilgiri Blackbird is a specific resident of the Western Ghats of the Indian subcontinent upto a height of 2000m, covering the southern range of the Western Ghats. They are a member of the family of Thrushes.

They have a distinct eye- ring and patch of orange post orbital skin, and orange legs and feet. They have a loud melodious song resembling that of an Oriental Magpie Robin, with much mimicry of other species, whistles and knock like sounds all made in sequence. They can be seen and heard in the gardens of the houses in the Western Ghats, foraging for insects in the undergrowth or perched on larger plants and flowers, where I photographed this fine specimen.

They are found in moist forests, sholas and ravines, and often in gardens in the hills of the Western Ghats, bathing in water bodies late in the evening.

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