May 28, 2009

Shut Your Mouth

I can't believe I've never heard of this bird. Three and a half years into this blog, and I get the suspicion that I've only scratched the surface of the Uglosphere.

Behold the Sri Lanka Frogmouth. This is a nocturnal bird, most closely related to nightjars. As you might guess, they are found in Sri Lanka, but also in Southwest India.

As parents they work in shifts to incubate their single egg. The female takes the graveyard shift, while the male takes the day.

They're insectivorous, and their flight is described as weak and erratic, but they nevertheless manage to catch their share of crunchy morsels.

I'm going to have to spend the next few minutes staring at this bird to try to decide if it looks more like a ferbie, a muppet, or the illicit offspring of a frog and Skeksi.

Thanks for the photos, Jelo.



14 comments:

LibrarianJessica said...

Are you sure this is a real bird and not a still from a deleted scene from Labyrinth?

Ellen said...

I was thinking the same thing. It looks like something animated. i think I saw this on an episode of the Muppet Show when I was a kid.

Danielle said...

They're like muppets! I thought of the Labyrinth when I saw them too, especially the last picture.

Deaf Indian Muslim Anarchist! said...

lol @ Labyrinth. Real or not, it's still CUTE and cuddly.

Anonymous said...

Australia had frogmouths too. Take a look at the Tawny Frogmouth. We see them all the time here (south-east Queensland). During the day they will hang out in our triangle palm pretending to look like tree branches (quite successfully actually) and at night they fly silently around looking for mice and other small things, calling for each other in a particularly eerie voice. They look quite similar to this one but with yellow eyes.

From Cyanide

Soujin said...

Oh God I want one. I WANT ONE.

Whitney said...

I personally thought of Nimbly from The Neverending Story II myself.

Whitney said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Anonymous said...

We have their cousin in the Oil-bird family, the Nightjar, here in Texas. They are also called night hawks. Wonderful and weird birds. I used to go out around midnight with a birdwatching slightly batty prof of mine in grad school to watch them catch insects around the steeple of an abandoned church.

You should check out some of the pics of nightjars/nighthawks as they hide in dead leaves on the forest floor. They are hard to spot.

Anonymous said...

We get Tawny Frogmouths in our area,which look like cousins of the PNG one, and they are stunning birds.

Have a go at this link for some pictures of the Australian version: http://www.wiresnr.org/tawneyfrog.html

La Pew

Moxie58 said...

La Pew, thanks for the links. Oh my god, they're even u/g/l/i/e/r/cuter than I thought possible.

r said...

Yet another person who thought "labrynth" immediately upon seeing these pictures.

Carl said...

DUDE! That thing is awesome! I was thinking it fell out of a scene in the Dark Crystal but I could see Labyrinth too. Cool!

Bugsy said...

*dun-dun-dun-dun-da-dun* "It's time to play the music, it's time to light the lights. It's time to meet the muppets on the show tonight!"