Coraciiformes Taxon Advisory Group -
Indian Blue Roller (Coracias benghalensis)
SSP Manager: Not a TAG Recommended Species
There are three distinct subspecies of the Indian blue roller found with overlapping ranges in India. The three subspeces are: Coracias b. benghalensis, C. b. indica, and C. b. affinis.
The Indian blue roller is considered to be non-threatened at this time due to its ability to adjust to human settlements. Habitat degredation could pose a threat to the population in the future due to ongoing large-scale development across much of the range.
Found in open, cultivated fields, plantations, coconut and date palm groves, light deciduous forests, dry woodlands, pasture, stubblefields, parks, and buildings standing in extensive grounds with lawns and trees.
The Indian blue roller breeding season is typically between March and May. The pair of birds willlocate the nest in the cavity of a tree trunk or branch. In Sri Lanka, one of the favored nesting locations is in the top of a coconut palm that has lost its fronds. The cavity is lined lightly with a bed of feathers, rags, grass bents, and wood shreds prior to 3-5 white eggs measuring approximately 34.7mm x 27.9mm being laid. Incubation lasts between 17 and 19 days and is undertaken primarily by the female. After the eggs hatch, the altricial chicks are cared for by both parents and will fledge from the nest in approximately four weeks. The male does most of the food acquisition, returning to the nest site with whole food items that have been tenderized against a hard surface.
The diet consists of large arthropods, small vertebrates, and can include grasshoppers, crickets, locusts, moths, wasps, beetles, lizards, toads, snakes, mice, shrews, fish, and young birds. Food is primarily obtained by the roller stationing itself at an observation point and descending on the prey item.
Indian Blue Roller Gallery
Indian Blue Roller Bibliography