The red-cheeked bulbul (Latin Pycnonotus jocosus) is a songbird of the Bulbul family (Pycnonotidae) from the Passeriformes order.
He is a native of South Asia, prefers to settle in regions with a warm climate - India, South China and Nepal.
Initially, representatives of this species lived in forests, but due to deforestation, they moved to orchards and urban plantings, not at all afraid of the neighborhood with people.
These birds were introduced to the USA and Australia, where they successfully took root. In Australia there are many of them in the suburbs of Melbourne and Sydney, in the USA they have chosen sunny and warm Florida.
Red-cheeked bulbul are good-natured and companionable creatures, living sedentary. At night, they flock to spend the night in the treetops. With the first rays of the sun, a noisy flock of birds goes in search of food.
All day long they almost ceaselessly echo among themselves in high and sonorous voices. Their vocabulary is quite large, and they express complex emotions with very melodic singing.
In search of food, birds usually keep in small groups of 3-6 individuals, moving together along tree branches and trying to find ripe berries and flower buds.
Their favorite food is the fruit of palm trees, papaya and overripe fruits of fruit trees lying on the soil. In addition to these delicacies, bulbuls eat flower nectar, arachnids, butterflies, flies and their larvae.
Ants are especially appreciated by gourmets. They slowly peck them, comfortably sitting on the branches. Outside the nesting period, red-cheeked bulbul live in married couples, zealously guarding their sites, however, when there is a lot of food, they form flocks of up to several dozen individuals.
The nesting period runs from mid-winter to late summer. At this time, the male restlessly sings short but meaningful songs filled with melodic trills and dashing chirping. So he calls his future soul mate and demonstrates to competitors that the home plot is occupied, and soon a happy family nest will appear on it.
The male becomes extremely belligerent and ruthlessly drives away competitors from his lands, the sizes of which range from 3000 to 7500 square meters. m. During this period, in some regions of Asia, males are caught for gambling bird fights.
Having created a married couple, the Bulbuls proceed to the construction of the nest. It is cupped and built from grass, stems and small twigs. Its walls are woven in such a way that rainwater can flow out without remaining in the tray.
In a clutch, there are 2-4 eggs of a pale pink color, decorated with brown specks. It is incubated alternately by both spouses for 11-12 days. Chicks hatch helpless and naked, but on the third day they open their eyes and develop rather quickly.
Parents feed their offspring with caterpillars, insects and larvae. Two weeks old, the chicks leave the nest and rebuild to plant food, but continue to be under parental care.
After another week, they already fly well and begin an independent life. During one season, one couple manages to make the world happy with 2-3 broods.
Body length 19-21 cm, weight 26-39 g. On the back it is painted brownish, and the crown is blackish. The cheeks and neck are white, the belly is light beige.
The tail and wings are brown-gray, the undertail is red. On the head there is a tuft of blackish feathers. Elongated reddish spots are located on the sides under the eyes.
The tail consists of broad feathers with a whitish border around the edges.
The paws are gray. On them, 3 fingers are directed forward and 1 back. They are all armed with sharp claws. Medium-sized, straight beak ends with a pointed tip.
The life expectancy of red-cheeked bulbul in natural conditions is about 5-6 years.