After shooting the babblers I posted last week I was returning back i spotted this The Ashy Prinia or Ashy Wren-Warbler (Prinia socialis), searching for insects on a dry bamboo fence. It was just before sunset. I had to use ISO 1600 to get a decent speed of 1/350th of a second to get the photo of this hyperactive bird. I was using Canon EOS 7D with Canon EF 300mm f/2.8 L IS USM + Canon EF 1.4x II Extender.
The bird was very active and was prancing around searching for food, but used to land back again on the same fence. This gave me ample opportunity to pre-focus the fence as shoot as soon as the bird arrived there.
Ashy Prinia is a small warbler. It is slightly smaller than a sparrow. It is ashy slate-colored above and fulvous white below. The loose, longish, graduated, black-and-white tipped tail is carried partially erect and constantly shaken up and down. Both sexes are alike. Its winter plumage is less slaty, more brown, than in summer.
It is seen in pairs in gardens and well-watered scrub country. Frequenting shrubbery in gardens, reeds bordering streams, and moist grassland and scrub, it hops about quietly among bushes, shaking its tail loosely up and down and uttering a sharp call from time to time. It is a familiar bird of urban gardens and its small size, distinctive colors and upright tail make it easy to identify.
Its nesting season is from March to September, mainly after the onset of the monsoon. It builds two types of nests – 1) Like a Tailor Bird’s, in a funnel of stitched leaves, and 2) an oblong purse of woven fibres tacked and bound with cobweb to the supporting leaves of a low bush.
The song is a repetitive tchup, tchup, tchup or zeet-zeet-zeet. It also makes a sound like “electric sparks” which is said to be produced by either the wings or by the beak.