Binomial name: Coracias benghalensis
This azure beauty is a conscpicuous bird of open country and grasslands, mostly the arid regions. The name is derived from the dramatic rolling flight displays. Though appearing vividly coloured when perched, the sudden flashes of blue and azure in flight are truly spectacular!!!
Rollers are typically ‘sit-and-wait’ predators. They keep a watch from any elevated station – a tree, lamp post, fence or building – and sail down to land by the prey, which is grabbed in the bill, dismembered and eaten back at the perch.
They will eat all the noxious prey that other birds generally leave alone, such as hairy caterpillars, centipedes, small snakes and they often eat scorpions. They will, in fact, eat practically all invertebrates encountered on the ground, including spiders, worms, molluscs, mantises, and even a wide range of vertebrates like lizards, toads, rodents, etc. They forage well into dusk and sometimes feed at night near street lights.
- Provide a high level of metabolisable energy, around 77%!!
- Contain 55-85% moisture, helpful in the arid areas.
- Protein levels in insects are very high, 20-80% of protein.
- Contain good amounts of magnesium, potassium, sodium and chlorine.
- The real killer though is the good amount of fat!!
– Until the next post…Ciao friends!!!