<< Previous Next >>

Yellow-billed Blue Magpie

Yellow-billed Blue Magpie
Photo Information
Copyright: Ram Thakur (ramthakur) Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 4316 W: 231 N: 14052] (56953)
Genre: Animals
Medium: Color
Date Taken: 2009-02-25
Categories: Birds
Camera: Nikon D200, Sigma 70-300 4-5.6 APO DG MACRO, 58mm UV
Exposure: f/6.3, 1/320 seconds
Photo Version: Original Version
Date Submitted: 2013-06-21 19:49
Viewed: 5384
Points: 32
[Note Guidelines] Photographer's Note
I took this picture at my native village in the Himalayas in the winter of 2009. It was lying in my archives, so I decided to post it today.

The Yellow-billed Blue Magpie or Gold-billed Magpie (Urocissa flavirostris) is a passerine bird in the crow and jay family, Corvidae. It forms a superspecies with the Taiwan Blue Magpie and the Red-billed Blue Magpie. The species ranges across the northern parts of the Indian Subcontinent including the lower Himalayas, with a disjunct population in Vietnam.


Length 26 inches, including tail of about 18 inches. Sexes alike. Head, neck, and breast black, with a white patch on the nape ; remainder of lower plumage white, faintly tinged with lilac ; whole upper plumage purplish-blue, brighter on the wings and tail ; flight-feathers tipped with white, the outermost edged with the same ; tail long and graduated, the feathers blue, broadly tipped with white, all except the very long central pair having a band of black in front of the white.


The Yellow-billed Magpie is found throughout the Himalayas from Hazara to the Brahmaputra. It is divided into two races. Of these U. f. cucullata is the better known and is found from the Western boundary of the range to Western Nepal, being a common species about most of the hill stations of the Western Himalayas, breeding in a zone from 5000 to 10,000 feet. The typical form is found from Eastern Nepal eastwards and differs in that the under parts have a darker lilac tinge ; its zone is slightly higher than that of the Western form, as it seldom occurs 'as low as 6000 feet. A resident species, but during the winter months it usually deserts the higher parts of its summer zone. From Simla eastwards the closely allied Red-billed Blue-Magpie (Urocissa melanocephala) is often found in the same areas as the yellow-billed species ; it is particularly common about Mussoorie, Tehri-Garhwal, -Kumaon, and in Nepal, and may be easily distinguished by its red beak and the greater extent of the white nape-patch. The lovely Green-Magpie (Cissa chinensis) is found in forest along the lower Himalayas from the Jamna eastwards and in parts of Assam, Eastern Bengal and Burma. It is brilliant green in colour (which hasa tendency to fade to blue) with a black band through the eye and red bill, wings and tail.


maaciejka, nagraj, aruntp, pierrefonds, rousettus has marked this note useful
Only registered TrekNature members may rate photo notes.
Add Critique [Critiquing Guidelines] 
Only registered TrekNature members may write critiques.
You must be logged in to start a discussion.

Critiques [Translate]

Hello Ram,
very interesting bird. Unusual for me. Excellent low point of view. Nice presentation and composition.
Have a nice weekend,

  • Great 
  • nagraj Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 1618 W: 106 N: 3208] (15166)
  • [2013-06-21 21:41]

Wonder why you have not posted this earlier...beautiful bird, so colorful and in good composition..some blue cast is there, try to remove it. tfs.

Hello Ram,
I am impressed by the magnificent sharpness and details of this image. The composition is wonderful. Very nice colors and outstanding clarity. It is a superb capture. This interesting has very nice colors. Exceptional sharp details as usual.

  • Great 
  • aruntp Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 590 W: 1 N: 357] (5379)
  • [2013-06-21 23:29]

Beautiful bird species. nicely presented. seen for the first time. good work.

great bird and great composition, I have seen this wonderful bird last year in your country, greetings Ori

Hello Ram,
很漂亮的鳥 顏色繽紛 真是美麗
照的也清楚 構圖美麗

Ciao Ram, great capture of fantastic bird in a beautiful ambientation, excellent clarity, wonderful colors and splendid light, very well done, my friend, have a good week end, ciao Silvio

Dear Ram
Great bird and perfect compo

Hello Ram,
Outstanding photograph of Yellow-billed Blue Magpie, excellent sharpness and details, good composition, outstanding background and good lighting.
Thanks for sharing,

  • Great 
  • lousat Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 6595 W: 89 N: 15659] (65489)
  • [2013-06-22 15:59]

Hi Ram,beautiful specie and beautiful capture,only the colors looks a bit cold but i like a lot the pose and the best details everywhere,from the head to the end of tail.Have a nice Sunday and thanks,Luciano

Excellent portrait of this wonderful bird. I really missed it when I travelled to India.
thanks for posting

  • Great 
  • anel Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 3053 W: 3 N: 8715] (40574)
  • [2013-06-24 6:09]

Hello Ram,
Missed some of your shots, but I know you don't mind :-)
What a special bird you show here with this amazing long tail. Must be something to see it fly!
It was a good idea to bring it out of your archives to us.
And I hope that you are fine.
Herzlich grüsst

Sorry Sir, I am bit late to response.
It is superb picture, great clarity and composition.
I am also wonder why you deprived us so long for not posting this beautiful image.
blue cast is there.
with regards,

Hi Ram,

The branches are framing well the bird. The point of view is showing the détails and colours of the Yellow-billed Blue Magpie. The good luminosity is making the colours to stand out. Have a nice day.


Hello Ram
Fantastic bird. Great POV and compostion, wonderful colours and great details. Great light managment. Thank You for sharing this beauty.
Have a good day!
Best regards
J. Diogo

Hello Mr. Ram
Recently I was far away from TN. Now I have visited your last posts. I have seen many great shots and very beautiful species. One of them is this magpie. It is very pretty with colorful plumage. General appearance is a bit similar to Pica pica magpie here.
You nicely captured it from frontal POV, when it roosting.
Thanks for sharing this beauty. Best regards

Calibration Check