I had the good fortune to travel to Bhutan between April and May 2013. One of the first bird species I saw was the Ibisbill (Ibidorhyncha struthersii) at Paro River, which is near the international airport.
The Ibisbill is a peculiar looking bird. Its long, down-curved bill is red as is its eyes. The name is derived from it’s curved bill like the ibis. It is however a unique species related to the waders but sufficiently distinct to form its own taxonomic family.
They are found on stony riverbanks of the high plateau of Central Asia and the Himalayas, from Kazakhstan to China and southwards to India.
Below is my photographic account of the species.
Throughout the rest of the trip, we heard a number of calls of the Ibisbills near river beds, but never investigated further. However, on the last day of birding, I had the good fortune of encountering a family of them at Paro River again. This time around the birds were a little further away but it was an interesting encounter, one that yielded nice pictures and memories.
A successful hunt for a crustacean, possibly a prawn. It then proceeded to swallow it by lifting its head, tossing the prey in mid air and then swallowing it whole. Somewhat like what other long-billed waders like godwits do.