Retrospectacle: A Neuroscience Blog

New Bird Species Identified in India!

Not for 50 years has a new species of bird been identified! But, a new and very colorful species was recently found in India, Yahoo news reports (pictured below.)

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The new species, called Bugun Liocichla, was first seen this past May in a remote corner of India–the state of Arunachal Predesh which shares a border with China. It was found by Ramana Athreya, a member of Mumbai’s Natural History Society, who named it after the local Bugun tribe.

Birdlife International, a global alliance of conservation organizations, described it on its Web site Tuesday as “the most sensational ornithological discovery in India for more than half a century.”

Athreya caught two of the species, but released them after making detailed notes and taking photographs — and keeping feathers that had worked loose in his net.

“We thought the bird was just too rare for one to be killed,” Athreya said.

“With today’s modern technology, we could gather all the information we needed to confirm it as a new species. We took feathers and photographs and recorded the bird’s songs,” he said.

(Hat tip to David!)


  1. #1 Sylvestor The Cat
    September 13, 2006

    Sufferin Sucotash, what a delectible little morsal – looks a lot like a Tweety Bird to me!

  2. #2 Shelley Batts
    September 13, 2006

    Stay away from that tasty bird! He’s too rare to eat. Try a crow instead.

  3. #3 The Ridger
    September 13, 2006

    I’m thrilled the bird was found and so pleased they didn’t kill one. I just reread Huxley’s Man’s Place in Nature, and the casual way he quoted the people who slaughtered apes… I know, I know, different times different attitudes – but I’m still glad to see it really is a different attitude.

  4. #4 Karl
    September 13, 2006

    Cool! But what is it? Or should I say what familiar bird is it related to? Is it a wren, a chickadee, a sparrow, what?

  5. #5 Mick Gordon
    September 19, 2006

    How very exciting – you have to wonder how it is that this creature had escaped detection for so long, it must have some kind of obscure habitat like a cave or mountaintop plateau.

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