Black-winged Stilt at sunrise

Black winged stilt at sunrise reflected in a salt pan, Tal chhapar, Rajasthan, India.

About the Black-winged Stilt:

Black winged stilts are social birds, usually found in small groups. They rarely stray far from water bodies and are commonly seen around freshwater and saltwater marshes, mudflats, and the edges of lakes and rivers. These striking birds are instantly recognisable by their extremely long pink legs, long fine bill and striking red eyes. They feed by wading through shallow water whilst picking out aquatic insects with their slender bills. 

You can find out more about Black-winged Stilts here.


Tal Chhapar Wildlife Sanctuary is located in Northwestern Rajasthan on the fringe of the Great Indian Desert; The Thar. This small grassland habitat is surrounded by sparse scrub and dry dusty plains peppered with salt pans. Originally a hunting ground for the Maharaja of Bikaner it was declared a sanctuary in the 1960s.

India’s Grasslands are home to some of its most endangered species, many of which are endemic. This important habitat now only exists in a handful of places in India and is sadly becoming increasingly scarce.

This stunning grassland wasn’t always the paradise seen today. After decades of neglect and encroachment by the nearby salt production the sanctuary was in a sorry state. Thanks to efforts coordinated by Mr. S.S.Poonia, the range forest officer at Tal Chhapar, over the years the grassland has been transformed. After gradually stripping away the invasive plant; Prosopis juliflora a variety of grasses were planted such as Mothiya grass, a favourite of the blackbucks, which derives its name from ‘moti’ meaning pearl, as its sweet seeds look like pearls. The final result is vast swathes of pristine grassland bustling with animal life. 

Tal Chhapar Wildlife Sanctuary


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Black winged stilt at sunrise reflected in a salt pan, Tal chhapar, Rajasthan, India.


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