An appraisal of avian species diversity in and around Purulia Town, West Bengal, India

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Swastik Mahato
Sudipta Mandal
Dipanwita Das


Purulia, the westernmost district of West Bengal, India is least explored with respect to the biological diversity and relatively little information is available to date.  The present study was conducted from February 2017 to January 2018 to document avifaunal diversity in Purulia Town and surroundings.  Sampling was done through the line transect method with photographic documentation and subsequent identification following suitable keys.  Species richness and seasonal abundance were calculated.  Altogether, 115 species of birds belonging to 19 orders and 43 families were recorded during the study period.  Passeriformes was the most dominant order represented by 46 species during the study.  The Shannon-Wiener (H’) value was highest for January (1.564).  A large number of migratory birds visit Purulia every year mostly during winter and it is reflected in the present study.  Diverse foraging habit among the birds was observed during the study period and omnivorous birds (29%) were found in highest number followed by invertivores (26%), carnivores (25%), granivores (8%), herbivores (7%), frugivores (3%), and nectarivores (2%).  The present study is a preliminary effort to document the avifaunal diversity of Purulia and a more extensive systematic study should be carried out to investigate and protect the avifaunal diversity of this region.

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