White-rumped Munia

White-rumped Munia
White-rumped Munia

The White-rumped Munia or White-rumped Mannikin (Lonchura striata). These are close relatives of the true finches (Fringillidae) and true sparrows (Passeridae).

The White-rumped Munia is approximately 10 to 11 cm in length, with a stubby grey bill and a long black pointed tail. The adults are brown above and on the breast, and lighter below; the rump is white. This is theLonchura striata striata (Linnaeus, 1766) subspecies – Southwestern White-rumped Munia found in Southern Indian mainland. It has Dark chocolate-brown above, white below.

The White-rumped Munia is a common resident breeder ranging from South Asia to southern China east to Taiwan, and through Southeast Asia south to Sumatra; it frequents open woodland, grassland and scrub, and is well able to adapt to agricultural land use. It is a gregarious bird which feeds mainly on seeds, moving through the undergrowth in groups and sometimes accompanying other birds such as Puff-throated Babblers (Pellorneum ruficeps). The nest is a large domed grass structure in a tree, bush or grass into which 3-8 white eggs are laid.

It is a common and widespread bird across its large range, and is thus not considered a threatened species by the IUCN. In fact, it may locally become a nuisance pest of millets and similar grains. Even the Nicobar Islands subspecies with its limited range seems to be able to cope well with human settlement. As it is a drab-colored and rather reclusive bird inhabiting dense undergrowth, the White-rumped Munia is not necessarily conspicuous even where it occurs in considerable numbers.

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