Waltèrre has a birding checklist of over 350 species. The elusive Nepal Wren-Babbler was first found in India in its garden. Five species of sunbirds are found regularly feeding in the garden. Three types of forktails are seen in the river at the bottom of the resort. The river Tons has resident brown dippers.

Our amazing Walterre holiday

My wife’s only problem with my birding trip was the fact that since she’s not into birds, she had to either sit alone in the lodges we stayed in or had to stay at home while I was traveling.

But that problem was solved when we went to the Doon Valley, namely Dehradun and Mussoorie. We stayed at the amazing Walterre bungalow, and while I was enjoying watching and photographing the various avian beauties that the bungalow is home to, like Crimson Sunbird, Maroon Oriole, various woodpeckers, and many more, she was able to enjoy the beautiful garden and library back at the bungalow. In addition, the places we visited were so beautiful that even a non-birder would appreciate them.

We can’t wait for our next short tour with Asian Adventures. Especially if it is to places that are so amazing



A checklist of birds of the Dehradun Valley and adjoining hills Compiled by Bikram Grewal

The area under discussion is the Dehradun Valley and its neighboring hills, starting with the River Ganga to the east and the River Yamuna to the west. This includes the highly productive wetland the Asan Barrage, near Paonta Sahib. The north encompasses the hills of Chakrata, Mussoorie, and Dhaunalti. The south takes in the relevant portion of the Rajaji National Park.

This checklist has been based on various sources. BB Omaston was the first (1935) to do a systematic checklist of Dehradun and its adjourning hills. This checklist through detailed is now both outdated and quaint. Subsequently, two local bird-watchers (based in the Forest Research Institute) produced sensible and detailed checklists. The first was D. Mohan’s “Birds of New Forest, Dehra Dun, India” (1996) which was subsequently incorporated in AP Singh’s (2000) excellent ” Birds of lower Garhwal and neighboring hills”. Another useful checklist published in 1994 was Pandey et al “Birds of the Rajaji National Park” All of the above three were published in the Forktail, the journal of the Oriental Bird Club.

The attached checklist is primarily based on the above but has drawn, as well, on the writings of other observers like R Fleming, Nitin Jamdar, SA Hussain, Sudhir Vyas. First-hand reports of recent visitors like Bill Harvey, Nikhil Devasar, KB Singh, Mike Prince, Sumit Sen, et al have also been incorporated. The compiler, who is a part-time resident of Dehradun, has been birdwatching in the area for several years. This update owes a special debt to Arun P. Singh who kindly summarised the most recent new records for me.

A select bibliography is attached after the checklist. A detailed bibliography of the area is available with the compiler and he will be happy to provide it to those who may require it.

The compiler will be happy to discuss omissions, commissions, updates, and corrections. Please correspond directly with Bikram Grewal at biks.grewal@gmail.com

Chukar Black Francolin (Black Partridge) Grey-capped Pygmy Woodpecker Grey-bellied Cuckoo (Indian Plaintive Cuck
Grey Francolin (Grey Partridge) Brown-fronted Woodpecker Drongo Cuckoo
Common Quail Fulvous-breasted Woodpecker Asian Koel (Koel,)
Rain Quail (Black-breasted Quail) Yellow-crowned Woodpecker Green-billed Malkoha
Blue-breasted Quail Rufous-bellied Woodpecker Sirkeer Malkoha (Sirkeer Cuckoo)
Jungle Bush Quail Himalayan Woodpecker Greater Coucal (Crow-pheasant)
Hill Partridge (Common Hill Partridge) Rufous Woodpecker Lesser Coucal (Small Coucal)
Western Tragopan Lesser Yellownape Alexandrine Parakeet (Large Parakeet)
Koklass Pheasant Greater Yellownape Rose-ringed Parakeet
Himalayan Monal (Impeyan Pheasant) Streak-throated Woodpecker Slaty-headed Parakeet
Red Junglefowl Scaly-bellied Woodpecker Plum-headed Parakeet (Blossom-headed)
Kalij Pheasant Grey-headed Woodpecker Red-breasted Parakeet
Cheer Pheasant (Chir Pheasant) Himalayan Flameback Himalayan Swiftlet (Edible-nest Swiftlet)
Indian Peafowl (Common Peafowl) Black-rumped Flameback White-throated Needletail (Spinetail)
Lesser Whistling-teal Greater Flameback Alpine Swift
Greylag Goose Great Barbet (Great Hill Barbet) House Swift (Little Swift)
Bar-headed Goose Brown-headed Barbet (Green Barbet) Crested Treeswift (Crested Swift)
Ruddy Shelduck (Ruddy Sheldrake) Lineated Barbet Barn Owl
Common Shelduck Blue-throated Barbet Grass Owl (Eastern Grass Owl)
Comb Duck Coppersmith Barbet Mountain Scops Owl (Spotted Scops Owl)
Cotton Pygmy-goose (Cotton Teal) Indian Grey Hornbill (Gray Hornbill) Oriental Scops Owl (Little Scops Owl)
Gadwall Great Hornbill (Giant Hornbill) Collared Scops Owl
Falcated Duck (Falcated Teal) Oriental Pied Hornbill Eurasian Eagle Owl (Great Horned Owl,)
Eurasian Wigeon (Wigeon) Common Hoopoe (Hoopoe) Rock Eagle Owl
Mallard Indian Roller Brown Fish Owl
Spot-billed Duck (Spotbill) Dollarbird (Broad-billed Roller) Tawny Owl (Tawny Wood Owl)
Northern Shoveler (Shoveller) Common Kingfisher (Small Blue Kingfisher) Collared Owlet (Collared Pygmy)
Northern Pintail (Pintail) Stork-billed Kingfisher Asian Barred Owlet (Barred Owlet)
Garganey White-throated Kingfisher Jungle Owlet (Barred Jungle Owlet)
Common Teal Crested Kingfisher Spotted Owlet
Marble Duck (Marble Teal) Pied Kingfisher (Lesser Pied Kingfisher) Brown Hawk Owl (Brown Boobook)
Red-crested Pochard Blue-bearded Bee-eater Grey Nightjar (Indian Jungle Nightjar)
Common Pochard Green Bee-eater (Little Green Bee-eater) Large-tailed Nightjar (Long-tailed)
Ferruginous Pochard (White-eyed Pochard) Blue-cheeked Bee-eater Indian Nightjar (Common Indian Nightjar)
Baer’s Pochard Blue-tailed Bee-eater Savanna Nightjar (Franklin’s)
Tufted Duck (Tufted Pochard) Chestnut-headed Bee-eater Rock Pigeon (Blue Rock Pigeon)
Greater Scaup (Scaup Duck) Pied Cuckoo (Pied Crested Cuckoo) Hill Pigeon
Long-tailed Duck (Long-tail Duck) Large Hawk Cuckoo Snow Pigeon
Common Merganser (Goosander) Common Hawk Cuckoo Common Wood Pigeon (Wood Pigeon)
Small Buttonquail (Little buttonquail) Indian Cuckoo Speckled Wood Pigeon
Barred Buttonquail (Barred Bustard-Quail) Eurasian Cuckoo (Common Cuckoo) Oriental Turtle Dove (Rufous Turtle Dove)
Eurasian Wryneck (Wryneck) Oriental Cuckoo (Himalayan Cuckoo) Laughing Dove (Little Brown)
Speckled Piculet (Spotted Piculet) Lesser Cuckoo (Small Cuckoo) Spotted Dove
Brown-capped Pygmy Woodpecker Banded Bay Cuckoo Red Collared Dove (Red Turtle)
Eurasian Collared Dove (Indian Ring) Red-wattled Lapwing Greater Spotted Eagle
Emerald Dove (Bronze-winged Dove) Small Pratincole (Little Pratincole) Tawny Eagle (Eurasian Tawny Eagle)
Yellow-footed Green Pigeon Indian Skimmer Steppe Eagle
Pin-tailed Green Pigeon (Pin-tailed Pigeon) Yellow-legged Gull (Herring) Imperial Eagle
Wedge-tailed Pigeon Pallas’s Gull (Great Black-headed) Golden Eagle
Slaty-legged Crake Brown-headed Gull Bonelli’s Eagle (Bonelli’s Hawk Eagle)
Water Rail Black-headed Gull Booted Eagle (Booed Hawk Eagle)
Brown Crake Caspian Tern Rufous-bellied Eagle
White-breasted Waterhen River Tern (Indian River Tern) Changeable Hawk Eagle (Crested H Eagle)
Baillon’s Crake Little Tern Mountain Hawk Eagle
Ruddy-breasted Crake (Ruddy) Black-bellied Tern Common Kestrel (Kestrel, Eurasian Kestrel)
Purple Swamphen (Purple Moorhen) Whiskered Tern Red-necked Falcon (Red-headed Merlin)
Common Moorhen Osprey Eurasian Hobby (Hobby, Northern Hobby)
Common Coot (Coot) Oriental Honey-buzzard Oriental Hobby (Indian Hobby)
Eurasian Woodcock (Woodcock) Black-shouldered Kite (Black-winged Kite) Laggar Falcon
Wood Snipe Black Kite (Pariah Kite) Saker Falcon (Lanner)
Pintail Snipe Brahminy Kite Peregrine Falcon
Common Snipe (Fantail Snipe) Pallas’s Fish Eagle (Pallas’s Fishing Eagle) Little Grebe
Jack Snipe Lesser Fish Eagle (Himalayan Grey-headed Red-necked Grebe
Black-tailed Godwit Grey-headed Fish Eagle Great Crested Grebe
Spotted Redshank Lammergeier (Bearded Vulture) Black-necked Grebe
Common Redshank (Redshank) Egyptian Vulture (Small White, Scavenger) Darter (Indian Darter, Snakebird)
Marsh Sandpiper White-rumped Vulture Little Cormorant
Common Greenshank (Greenshank) Long-billed Vulture Indian Cormorant (Shag)
Green Sandpiper Himalayan Griffon Great Cormorant (Large Cormorant)
Wood Sandpiper Eurasian Griffon Little Egret
Terek Sandpiper Cinereous Vulture (Black Vulture) Grey Heron
Common Sandpiper Red-headed Vulture (King Vulture) Purple Heron
Little Stint Short-toed Snake Eagle (Short-toed Eagle) Great Egret (Large Egret)
Temminck’s Stint Crested Serpent Eagle Intermediate Egret (Median Egret)
Ruff Hen Harrier W (Northern Harrier) Cattle Egret
Greater Painted-snipe (Painted Snipe) Pallid Harrier (Pale Harrier) Indian Pond Heron (Pond Heron
Pheasant-tailed Jacana Pied Harrier Little Heron (Little Green Heron)
Bronze-winged Jacana Montagu’s Harrier Black-crowned Night Heron (Night Heron)
Eurasian Thick-knee (Stone-curlew) Crested Goshawk Little Bittern
Great Thick-knee (Great Stone Plover) Shikra Yellow Bittern
Black-winged Stilt Besra (Besra Sparrow-hawk) Cinnamon Bittern (Chestnut Bittern)
Pied Avocet (Avocet) Eurasian Sparrowhawk Black Bittern
Little Ringed Plover ( Little Ring Plover) Northern Goshawk (Goshawk) Black-headed Ibis (White Ibis)
Kentish Plover White-eyed Buzzard (White-eyed Buzzard) Black Ibis (Red-naped Ibis)
Northern Lapwing (Eurasian Lapwing) Common Buzzard Eurasian Spoonbill (Spoonbill)
Yellow-wattled Lapwing Long-legged Buzzard Great White Pelican (Rosy Pelican)
River Lapwing (Spur-winged) Black Eagle Painted Stork
Grey-headed Lapwing Indian Spotted Eagle Asian Openbill (Asian Openbill)
Black Stork Ashy Drongo(Grey) White-tailed Rubythroat (Himalayan)
Woolly-necked Stork (White-necked) White-bellied Drongo Bluethroat
Black-necked Stork Bronzed Drongo (Little Bronzed Drongo) Indian Blue Robin (Blue Chat)
Hooded Pitta (Green-breasted Pitta) Lesser Racket-tailed Drongo Orange-flanked Bush Robin
Indian Pitta Spangled Drongo (Hair-crested) Golden Bush Robin
Long-tailed Broadbill Black-naped Monarch White-browed Bush Robin
Golden-fronted Leafbird (Chloropsis) Asian Paradise-flycatcher Oriental Magpie Robin
Orange-bellied Leafbird (Chloropsis) Common Iora (Iora) White-rumped Shama (Shama)
Rufous-tailed Shrike (Isabelline) Common Woodshrike Indian Robin
Brown Shrike Brown Dipper Blue-capped Redstart
Bay-backed Shrike Blue-capped Rock Thrush Black Redstart
Long-tailed Shrike (Rufous-rumped) Chestnut-bellied Rock Thrush Blue-fronted Redstart
Grey-backed Shrike (Tibetan) Blue Rock Thrush White-capped Water Redstart
Great Grey Shrike Blue Whistling Thrush (Whistling Thrush) Plumumbeous Water Redstart
Southern Grey Shrike (Grey Shrike) Orange-headed Thrush White-bellied Redstart
Eurasian Jay (Jay) Plain-backed Thrush Blue-fronted Robin
Black-headed Jay Long-tailed Thrush Little Forktail
Yellow-billed Blue Magpie Scaly Thrush Black-backed Forktail
Red-billed Blue Magpie Long-billed Thrush Slaty-backed Forktail
Common Green Magpie Common Green Magpie Tickell’s Thrush Spotted Forktail
Rufous Treepie (Indian Treepie) White-collared Blackbird Common Stonechat
Grey Treepie (Himalyan Treepie) Grey-winged Blackbird Pied Bushchat (Pied Stone-chat)
Spotted Nutcracker Eurasian Blackbird Grey Bushchat (Dark-grey Bushchat)
Red-billed Chough Chestnut Thrush (Grey-headed Thrush) Variable Wheatear
Yellow-billed Chough Dark-throated Thrush Rufous-tailed Wheatear
House Crow Mistle Thrush Desert Wheatear
Large-billed Crow (Jungle/Black Crow Spotted Flycatcher Isabelline Wheatear (Chat)
Ashy Woodswallow (Ashy Swallow-shrike) Dark-sided Flycatcher Brown Rock-chat (Indian Chat)
Eurasian Golden Oriole (Golden Oriole) Asian Brown Flycatcher Spot-winged Starling
Black-hooded Oriole (Black-headed) Rusty-tailed Flycatcher Chestnut-tailed Starling
Maroon Oriole Rufous-gorgeted Flycatcher Brahminy Starling
Large Cuckooshrike Red-throated Flycatcher Rosy Starling
Bar-bellied Cuckooshrike (Barred) Snowy-browed Flycatcher Common Starling
Black-winged Cuckooshrike Little Pied Flycatcher Asian Pied Starling (Pied Myna)
Black-headed Cuckooshrike Ultramarine Flycatcher Common Myna (Mynah)
Rosy Minivet Slaty-blue Flycatcher Bank Myna
Small Minivet (Little Minivet) Verditer Flycatcher Jungle Myna
Long-tailed Minivet Small Niltava Chestnut-bellied Nuthatch
Scarlet Minivet (Orange Minivet) Rufous-bellied Niltava (Beautiful) White-tailed Nuthatch
Bar-winged Flycatcher-shrike Blue-throated Flycatcher Velvet-fronted Nuthatch
Yellow-bellied Fantail Hill Blue Flycatcher Wallcreeper
White-throated Fantail Tickell’s Blue Flycatcher Eurasian Treecreeper
White-browed Fantail (Flycatcher) Grey-canary Flycatcher Bar-tailed Treecreeper
Black Drongo Siberian Rubythroat Rusty-flanked Treecreeper
Winter Wren Spotted Bush Warbler Chestnut-tailed Minla
Fire-capped Tit Blyth’s Reed Warbler White-browed Fulvetta
Rufous-naped Tit Booted Warbler Rufous Sibia
Spot-winged Tit Common Tailorbird (Tailorbird) Whiskered Yuhina
Grey-crested Tit Common Chiffchaff Stripe-throated Yuhina
Great Tit (Grey Tit) Dusky Warbler Rufous-vented Yuhina
Green-backed Tit Tickell’s Leaf Warbler Black-chinned Yuhina
Black-lored Tit Sulphur-bellied Warbler Lesser Whitethroat
Yellow-cheeked Tit Buff-barred Warbler Bushlark (Lark)
Yellow-browed Tit Ashy-throated Warbler Indian Bushlark
Black-throated Tit (Red-headed Tit) Lemon-rumped Warbler Rufous-winged Bushlark
White-throated Tit Yellow-browed Warbler Ashy-crowned Sparrow Lark
Pale Martin (Collared Sand Martin) Hume’s Warbler Sand Lark
Sand Martin (Collared Sand Martin) Greenish Warbler Crested Lark
Plain Martin Tytler’s Leaf Warbler Eurasian Skylark
Dusky Crag Martin Western Crowned Warbler Oriental Skylark
Barn Swallow 488. Blyth’s Leaf Warbler(Crowned) Thick-billed Flowerpecker
Wire-tailed Swallow Golden-spectacled Warbler Pale-billed Flowerpecker
Red-rumped Swallow (Striated) Whistler’s Warbler (Golden-spectacled) Fire-breasted Flowerpecker
Striated Swallow (Larger Striated) Grey-hooded Warbler Purple Sunbird
Streak-throated Swallow White-throated Laughingthrush Mrs Gould’s Sunbird
Northern House Martin White-crested Laughingthrush Green-tailed Sunbird
Asian House Martin (Asian Martin) Striated Laughingthrush Crimson Sunbird
Goldcrest Rufous-chinned Laughingthrush Fire-tailed Sunbird
Black-crested Bulbul Spotted Laughingthrush House Sparrow
Red-whiskered Bulbul Streaked Laughingthrush Russet Sparrow
White-eared Bulbul Variegated Laughingthrush Eurasian Tree Sparrow (Tree Sparrow)
Himalayan Bulbul Chestnut-crowned Laughingthrush Chestnut-shouldered Petronia
Red-vented Bulbul Puff-throated Babbler (Spotted Babbler) Forest Wagtail
Mountain Bulbul Rusty-cheeked Scimitar Babbler White Wagtail (Pied Wagtail)
Black Bulbul (Gray) White-browed Scimitar Babbler White Wagtail (Pied Wagtail)
Zitting Cisticola Scaly-breasted Wren Babbler White Wagtail (Pied Wagtail)
Striated Prinia Nepal Wren Babbler White-browed Wagtail
Hill Prinia Black-chinned Babbler Citrine Wagtail
Grey-breasted Prinia Tawny-bellied Babbler Citrine Wagtail
Jungle Prinia Yellow-eyed Babbler Yellow Wagtail
Ashy Prinia Common Babbler Grey Wagtail
Plain Prinia Striated Babbler Paddyfield Pipit (Indian Pipit)
Oriental White-eye Large Grey Babbler Tawny Pipit
Chestnut-headed Tesia Jungle Babbler Blyth’s Pipit
Pale-footed Bush Warbler Silver-eared Mesia Long-billed Pipit (Brown Rock pipit)
Brownish-flanked Bush Warbler Red-billed Leiothrix (Pekin Robin) Tree Pipit (Eurasian Tree Pipit)
Aberrant Bush Warbler White-browed Shrike Babbler Olive-backed Pipit
Grey-sided Bush Warbler Green Shrike Babbler Rosy Pipit
Upland Pipit Red Avadavat (Red Munia) Red Crossbill (Crossbill)
Alpine Accentor Indian Silverbill Brown Bullfinch
Altai Accentor White-rumped Munia (White-backed Munia) Red-headed Bullfinch
Robin Accentor Scaly-breasted Munia Black-and-yellow Grosbeak
Rufous-breasted Accentor Black-headed Munia Collared Grosbeak (Allied Grosbeak)
Brown Accentor Fire-fronted Serin Spot-winged Grosbeak
Black-throated Accentor Yellow-breasted Greenfinch Crested Bunting
Black-breasted Weaver European Goldfinch Pine Bunting
Baya Weaver (Baya) Plain Mountain Finch Rock Bunting
Dark-breasted Rosefinch Spectacled Finch Grey-necked Bunting
Common Rosefinch White-capped Bunting  
Beautiful Rosefinch Chestnut-eared Bunting  
Pink-browed Rosefinch Black-headed Bunting  
Scarlet Finch Red-headed Bunting