Asian Paradise Flycatcher

Asian Paradise Flycatcher  Terpsiphone paradisi


  • Terpsiphone : Greek word Terpsi  – delighting in ; phone –   { Delightful Voice}
  • Paradisi : Persian term pairi-daeza – walled garden

Vernacular names : Hindi: Rufous Plumage: Shah bulbul, Husaini bulbul White Plumage: Sultan Bulbul, Urdu: Taklal, Kash: Fhambasir, Ranga bulbul(F), Latraz, Pun: Pari tik tiki, Ass: Baari xundari, Cachar: Dao-rajah-gophu, Guj: Dudhraj, Duthraj, Tarwario, Mar: Nandan nachar, Patangaa, Baanpakhru, Svargiya nartak, Ta: Piramana-kuruvi, Vedi-vat-kuruvi, Mal, Wal konda lathi, Val kuruvi, Te: Toka pigili pitta, Kan: Raja hakki, Sinh: White-plummaged: Redi-hora, Lainsu-hora, Kaddehora, Rufous-plumaged: Gini-hora

 Distribution in India: Widespread Resident.

Description: Size of 19-20 cm. The male exhibits marked plumage dichromatism. Male nominate race of rufous morph has entirely glossy black head and very long crest, rufous mantle, upperwing and tail (central rectrices exceedingly long), greyish breast, white belly and vent; white morph has head and crest as rufous morph, rest of plumage white, with black primaries; iris brown, eyelid wattle bright blue; bill greyish-blue, blackish tip, mouth greyish-blue; legs greyish blue. Female is similar to rufous-morph male, but duller, with shorter crest, grey throat, shorter square-ended tail without elongated central feathers; eyelid wattle and bill duller and darker. Juvenile is like female, but breast feathers have indistinct pale centers and dark fringes; subadult male like female, but with black throat.

Habitat: It is found in deciduous mountain forest, shady and well-watered groves, light forest, plantations. In winter it’s found in gardens and shrubland, broadleaf evergreen forest, secondary growth, mangroves, island forest, on migration also gardens and parks and bamboo cultivation. In Himalayas it is found usually between 1200 m and 1500 m.

Food Habits:  It eats small winged insects. It is also capable of seizing very large prey, such as praying mantis, grasshoppers, moths, and butterflies. Large prey items battered to death, and only thorax and abdomen swallowed. Mostly singly or in pairs; also joins mixed-species flocks in understorey. Perches upright on lookout, often high in shady trees, and hawks for insects in quick sallies in mid-air, after capture looping back to same tree or different one. Gleaning from foliage far less common. Occasionally descends close to forest floor, where flutters in order to dislodge insects from the low vegetation..

Breeding Habits: They breed in Mar-Aug in India. They are monogamous and territorial. The male is very intolerant of intruders. The nest is built by both sexes, mostly by female, taking 4–7 days. The nest is a neat, deep, cone-shaped cup of grasses, fine roots, bast fiber and few leaves, bound together with spider web and thickly plastered with spider web and spider egg cases giving it a silvery colour. It is lined with rootlets and silky vegetable down placed usually in horizontal fork of tree or sapling, or woven around single vertical hanging branch, often bits of web and leaf form a hanging “tail” beneath cup. They lay a clutch of 2–5 eggs. The incubation is done by both sexes, from last egg for a period of 13–16 days. Both parents feed the chicks. The nestling period is 9–12 days.