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Indian Roller

Coracias benghalensis indicus


The Indian roller is a stocky bird about 26–27 cm long. The breast is brownish, the crown and vent are blue. The primaries are deep purplish blue with a band of pale blue. The tail is sky blue with a terminal band of Prussian blue and the central feathers are dull green. The neck and throat are purplish lilac with white shaft streaks. The bare patch around the eye is ochre in colour. The three forward toes are united at the base. Rollers have a long and compressed bill with a curved upper edge and a hooked tip. The nostril is long and exposed and there are long rictal bristles at the base of the bill. The subspecies indicus is found in peninsular India and Sri Lanka. It has a darker reddish collar on the hind neck.


Yala National Park, Sri Lanka Yala combines a strict nature reserve with a national park. Divided into 5 blocks, the park has a protected area of nearly 130,000 hectares of land consisting of light forests, scrubs, grasslands, tanks and lagoons. One block is currently opened to the public. Situated in Sri Lanka’s south-east hugging the panoramic Indian Ocean, Yala was designated a wildlife sanctuary in 1900 and was designated a national park in 1938. Ironically, the park was initially used as a hunting ground for the elite under British rule. Yala is home to 44 varieties of mammal and 215 bird species.


These two were in the middle of our track, doing what? Fighting, courting, dust bathing? Who knows. What we do know was that they were not afraid and did not leave their little patch, so we drove around them in the end.

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Muckpuk 8 years ago

Thank you punzelle.

punzelle 8 years ago

gorgeous photos of a beautiful bird ~

Muckpuk 8 years ago

Thank you James!

James McNair
James McNair 8 years ago

Lovely Muckpuk

Spotted by

Dambulla, මධ්‍යම පළාත, Sri Lanka

Spotted on Dec 31, 2014
Submitted on Jan 27, 2015

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