On ones first tour to Asia, a birder will be confronted by a variety of unfamiliar names; koels, malkohas, niltavas, ioras, shamas, minlas, sibias, treepies, yuhinas, leiothrix, avadavits and more! Some of these exciting birds’ names are derived from local languages, some from their scientific epithets and others from their calls. The Chestnut-headed Tesia is a beautiful little warbler belonging in the Cettidae warbler family, its name derived from the Nepali “tisi”. Five species of tesias occur from India to Indonesia and the closely related Neumann’s Warbler or Hemitesia is endemic to the Albertine Rift in Central Africa. Tesias are some of the most challenging of Asian birds to observe as these cute, short-tailed and brightly coloured ground dwellers lurk in the deepest forest undergrowth. They are usually detected by their strident calls, which seem to emanate from far more significant a creature, but obtaining even a glimpse can be a tall order.
This image was recently taken by Adam Riley during one of our Northern and Central Indian tours on which this endearing bird is often seen. This popular tour is a perfect introduction to Asia and participants are treated not only to superb Himalayan forest birding but also the birds and beasts of the woodlands and wetlands of the Gangetic Plains. So if the exotic birds mentioned above, as well as numerous pheasants, woodpeckers, laughingthrushes, Royal Bengal Tigers, toothy Gharials and the Taj Mahal are on your want list, then this is the perfect tour for you. Rockjumper’s next departure will be 1-18 December 2010, please contact our office for more details.