Scarlet Minivet

Distribution inIndia: Resident ofHimalayas, Hills of Central and East India, Easter Ghats in Andhra Pradesh and Andaman.


Size of22-23cm.It is a robust minivet with heavy bill, relatively broad tail. Male nominate race has head, chin, throat and mantle to upper back glossy blue-black, lower back, rump and upper tail-coverts fiery orange-red; upper wing black, greater coverts broadly tipped orange-red, remiges with broad band of orange-red near base, three innermost secondaries/tertials with red spot or line near tip of outer webs; rectrices black, all except central pair with orange-red tip, red increasing in extent on outers; underparts bright orange-red, thighs blackish, underwing-coverts bright yellow; iris dark brown; bill and legs black. Distinguished from all congeners by isolated red markings near tips of tertials and inner secondaries. Female has forehead and broad supraloral line bright yellow, crown to back and upper wing-coverts ashy grey to olive-washed grey, lower back, rump and upper tail-coverts greenish-yellow, remiges and rectrices blackish, red areas of male replaced by yellow; entirely bright yellow below.Found in broadleaf evergreen, semi-evergreen and deciduous forests, and peat swamp-forest; occurs also in orchards.

Food Habits:

Its eats caterpillars, grasshoppers and green crickets and cicadas, spiders and other insects.  It is gregarious and regularly joins mixed-species foraging flocks. Forages in canopy or in crowns of emergent trees. It visits crops of ripe figs for insects attracted by the fruit. Prey taken mainly in canopy foliage; also sallies after flushed prey, and hovers in front of flower.

Breeding Habits:

Breeds in Apr–Jun in Himalayas and Feb and Jun–Oct in peninsular India.The nest is a small, neat open cup of lichens, bound with cobwebs and decorated with bark on horizontal fork or tree branch. The incubation is performed by female only. It lays a clutch of 2-3 eggs. The incubation period is 11 days and fledging period is 12 days. The young fed by both sexes.