Birds of Kasavanahalli Lake -- Painted Stork

by Saravana S July. 31, 2020 560 views
The wise old man of the lake.

The wise old man of the lake.

The painted stork is the tallest bird that can be seen at the lake. They are non-residents, but frequent visitors to the lake. Unlike the open-bill storks, the painted storks are not found here in big numbers, but given their large size, they can be fairly easy to spot. Their distinctive black and white coat with pink accents makes it easy to recognize them even from afar.

The adult storks have a long orange bill and a wide wrinkled forehead devoid of any feathers, that sorta resembles a receding hairline :)

Different angle, similar story...

Different angle, similar story...

The difference between adult painted storks and their juveniles is quite remarkable. They almost look like two entirely different species. The feathers of the younger birds are brown and white and lack the pink accents. Also, just like their human counterparts, the juveniles sport a full head of dark hair and have no wrinkles on their face.

A young painted stork at a neighboring lake

A young painted stork at a neighboring lake

The home range of the painted stork falls mainly across the central and southern states of India and some small pockets of China, Cambodia, and Vietnam. Maybe we should start calling it the Indian stork then. So, out of curiosity, I Googled "Indian stork" and guess what I got as the top result?... It's not an official name of course, but if Google thinks so, its good enough :)

A painted stork gliding over the lake, looking for a spot to land.

A painted stork gliding over the lake, looking for a spot to land.

These birds are very graceful in flight and can cover long distances seemingly effortlessly. When in the air they stretch their entire body while gently flapping their wings, which is in stark contrast to the herons and egrets that curl up their necks close to the body when flying.

Here shown below is a painted stork carefully wading through the shallow pools to find some prey.

Typical hunting grounds at the lake for the painted stork

Typical hunting grounds at the lake for the painted stork

A painted stork on the move in the thick grass

A painted stork on the move in the thick grass

They spend most of their time near the lakeshore in shallow water scanning for fish and frogs by probing the waters with an open bill. A soon as some movement is detected in the water, the bill clamps shut and seals the fate of the unfortunate creature that tried to squeeze through.

There is no escape for that fish

There is no escape for that fish

These birds are quite reclusive and don't hang around on the ground when they are not actively feeding. One can usually find these storks perched high up on trees, far away from all the activity below.

A young adult bird perched far away from all the commotion below

A young adult bird perched far away from all the commotion below

Well, I hope this blog post gave you a little glimpse into the life of this gentle bird. I was brooding on this post for over a month now, and finally this week I was able to get some more shots to round off the post. I'll close with one final shot of the stork gathering some nesting material.

A painted stork ferrying nesting material

A painted stork ferrying nesting material

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There are 10 comments , add yours!
Heike 2 days, 10 hours ago

Beautiful creatures ( I mean the bodies not the headssmile) and excellent photos!

2 days, 10 hours ago Edited
Saravana S Replied to Heike 2 days, 10 hours ago

Haha. Thank you smile

2 days, 10 hours ago Edited
G B 2 days, 14 hours ago

stunning and captivating series!

2 days, 14 hours ago Edited
Saravana S Replied to G B 2 days, 14 hours ago

Thank you, Meg.

2 days, 14 hours ago Edited
Antonio Gil 3 days, 7 hours ago

Great work as always. It's a pleasure to see your posts

3 days, 7 hours ago Edited
Saravana S Replied to Antonio Gil 3 days, 7 hours ago

Thank you very much Antonio smile

3 days, 7 hours ago Edited
Nilesh Talele 3 days, 7 hours ago

awesome clicks bro.  as always good content smile .

3 days, 7 hours ago Edited
Saravana S Replied to Nilesh Talele 3 days, 7 hours ago

smile

3 days, 7 hours ago Edited
Don Baird 3 days, 7 hours ago

What a magnificent bird. Certainly more colorful than any storks in Florida. Great photos.

3 days, 7 hours ago Edited
Saravana S Replied to Don Baird 3 days, 7 hours ago

Thank you. Frankly my photos don't do full justice.

3 days, 7 hours ago Edited
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