I wanted to go for birding tour to Dibru Saikhowa, but ended up spending two days at Notun Gaon, Maguri Bil, Tinsukia in Assam. I did go to Dibru Saikhowa forest but realised that, I have to be inside it for at least 3/4 days in order to see white winged duck, which I wanted to see there. Me and Pranab Doley, photographer and budding birder from Guwahati landed on Doom Dooma, crossing mighty Brahmaputra by ferry on 16th Jan 2014.

Sunset at Maguri Bil
Sunset at Maguri Bil

Anyway, It was an wonderful experience and it was my first visit to that part of Assam. I was in touch with Dhiraj Dev in Twitter for almost a year who is based in tea estate at Doomdooma, Assam and finally could meet him. It always feels good to meet good people. He was kind enough to allow us stay at his house, organise boat and guide Paresh and also accompanied for the day on 17 Jan 2014.

The day did not exactly start great, as it took almost 3 hours to start the machine boat ( they call it ‘fighter’) as it had some problem. But eventually, it was started and we sailed from Baghjan to Guijan. On way we saw Rudy Shelduck, Great Crested Grebe, Indian darter, Greater Cormorant etc.

From Guijan, we sailed to Notun Gaon and walked on grass land to reach Maguri Bil where we saw Eurasian Curlew, a first sighting there after many years, as per the local guide. As the Sun sets early in that part of India, Dhiraj and Paresh went back to Baghjan by their ‘Fighter’, I stayed back and walked at least 5KM from Dibru River to Kahua Eco Tourism camp in dark, at night! It was an interesting experience!

The next day, I spent birding at whole day exploring looking for elusive Marsh babbler and Swamp Francolin! I could listen to call of Marsh babbler and Swamp francolin, but could not see them. So, I hope to see them in my next visit. Still, I am happy to have been able to see Baikal Teal and Falcated Duck!

Here are the bird list I saw during my 2 days stay at Dibru Saikhowa and Maguri Bil :-
1. Hen Harrier
2. Palid harrier
3. Eurasian Curlew
4. Falcated Duck
5. Baikal teal
6. Jerdons Babbler
7. Marsh Babbler
8. Yellow Bellied Babbler
9. Plain Prinia
10. Striated babbler
11. Blue Throat
12. Swamp Francolin
13. Smoky Warbler
14. Common Pochard
15. Pink headed Duck
16. Northern Shoveler
17. Northern Pintail
18. Bar headed geese
19. Rudy Shelduck
20. Ferruginous Duck
21. Common Coot
22. Bronze Winged Jacana
23. Pheasant Tailed Jacana

24. Lesser Caucal
25. Asian Open bil Stork
26. Hogson’s Redstart
27. Common Stonechat
28. Black Winged Stilt
29. Common Green Shank
30. Little Stint
31. Temnicks Stint
32. Common Greenshank
33. Wood Sandpiper
34. Green Sandpiper
35. Common Snipe
36. Sand Martin
37. Pied Kingfisher
38. Common Kingfisher
39. White Throated Kingfisher
40. Black Winged Kite
41. Little Cormorant
42. Greater Cormorant
43. Jungle Myna
44. Common Myna
45. Spotted Dove
46. Tree Sparrow
47. Common Swamp hen
48. White breasted Waterhen
49. Purple Swamphen
50. Common Crane
51. Cotton Pigmy Goose
52. Spotbilled Duck
53. Little Greebe
54. Greater Crested Grebe
55. Indian Darter
56. Gadwall
57. Little Egret
58. Greater Egret
59. Eurasian Wigeon
60. Purple Heron
61. Northern Lapwing

I sincerely thank Dhiraj and Paresh for their help without which most probably, I would have ended up visiting just Maguri Bil. But thanks to them, I could visit Dibru Saikhowa Dangri River or Dibru River and saw beautiful landscapes.

I will update this post with photos soon!

Updated once on by deleting Pink headed Duck after many comments on 22 Feb 2016. (This post will be updated again)

10 thoughts on “Birding at Maguri Beel, Tinsukia, Assam”

  1. Did you photograph the PINK HEADED DUCK sir? If so, can you show us? As it is Critically Endangered and is rare.

  2. You have Pink-headed Duck in your list. Is this a mistake or have you really rediscovered a species which most people think is extinct and which was last seen in 1949?

  3. Hello All,
    Thanks for pointing out about Pink Headed Duck. I was actually not aware of this species being an extinct and I was told about this species by the local bird guide who accompanied me on that day. I tried to take picture of all the birds listed here. I will check in my archives if I can find the picture of this bird and if the species was identified wrongly.
    Really appreciate for leaving a comment pointing out this.

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