The Black headed Ibis Sri Lanka

The Black-headed Ibis,
the bird with more names than a secret agent!

Also known as the Oriental White Ibis and Indian White Ibis, this wading wonder struts its stuff in South and Southeast Asia, rocking a snazzy white plumage with a black neck and head. Talk about making a fashion statement, no wonder it’s on the checklist of every bird watching tour in Sri Lanka! This Ibis is a versatile forager, so you will find it even outside the wetlands, exploring all kinds of habitats like a culinary adventurer on a quest for the perfect meal.

If you head out on a birding safari during breeding season, you’re in for a treat. This bird knows just how to accessorise and bring out the bling! When love is in the air the light grey tail feathers turn jet black, giving it an elegant touch; and the bare patches under the wings transform into a striking blood-red colour. Move over, fashion models, the Ibis is on the runway! Some breeding adults feel like they can do even more, and take it to the next level. They sport tufts of white feathers like a feathered mohawk and even show off a yellowish coloration on their breast and back. 

When it comes to nesting, this Ibis is as picky as a high-maintenance celebrity, but with excellent parenting skills. It only nests during the rainy season, ensuring its chicks have the best chance of success. Curiously, unlike most outspoken fashion icons, this fashionista is quite shy. It usually keeps quiet, except for some ventriloquistic grunts uttered at the nest; maybe it’s just too busy being fabulous to bother with a catchy tune!

If you're up for a wild adventure, join a birding tour in Sri Lanka and witness the fabulous Black-headed Ibis in all its avian glory. 

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