Jerdon’s Courser is a nocturnal bird found only in the state of Andhra Pradesh in India. It has been listed among the 50 rarest birds of the world. But sadly the number of this bird is diminishing and in a bid to save it from extinction, the Indian government has now included it in its Integrated Development of Wildlife Habitats’ (IDWH) scheme.

The government of Andhra Pradesh had requested the environment minister Jairam Ramesh to consider including the rare bird in its conservation efforts and the minister along with a high level committee took the decision to include the Jerdon’s courser as the 17th species protected under the scheme especially created for endangered species.

The other animals included in the IDWH scheme are,

  1. Snow leopards,
  2. Brow antlered deer
  3. Megapode found in Nicobar islands
  4. Asiatic Lions found in Gir,
  5. Bustard (including floricans)
  6. Dolphins
  7. Hangul
  8. Nilgiri tahr
  9. Marine turtles
  10. Dugongs and corals
  11. Edible nest swiftlets
  12. Asian wild buffalo
  13. Vultures
  14. Malabar civet
  15. Great one horned or Indian Rhinoceros
  16. Swamp deer

About the Jerdon’s Courser

The Courser was first discovered by Thomas C Jerdon in 1848. It is a restricted range nocturnal bird found only in the Eastern Ghats of India. It was thought to be extinct until it was rediscovered in 1986 at Andhra Pradesh’s Sri Lankamaleswara Wildlife Sanctuary. The bird is endemic to scrub jungle habitats in the state and is listed in the Schedule-I of the Wildlife (Protection) Act, 1972.

According to BirdLife International, “The Jerdon’s Courser inhabits sparse, thorny and non-thorny scrub-forest and bushes, interspersed with patches of bare ground, in gently undulating, rocky foothills.”

Research has also revealed that the bird is very particular about a kind of scrub forest. In recent years due to deforestation and clearance of forest land for farming and other needs, the Jerdon’s courser had faced major difficulties in finding a suitable habitat.

The Bombay Natural History Society along with Royal Society For Protection of Birds (RSPB), University of Reading and supported by the Andhra Pradesh Forest Department has been conducting research on the species as well as its habitat since 2000.

But now if efforts have to be made to really save this bird from extinction, the research on its habitat, nature, feeding habits, breeding habits etc. have to be increased. Otherwise future bird lovers may never get to know this rare and mysterious bird.

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About Atula Gupta

Atula Gupta is the Founder and Editor of Her work has appeared in a number of international websites, dailies and magazines including The Wire, Deccan Herald, New Indian Express, Down to Earth and Heritage India on issues related to environment and its conservation. She is also the author of Environment Science Essentials, a set of books for school children. She hopes this website provides a platform for people to be aware about species in the verge of extinction and heighten their conservation efforts.

10 thoughts on “Efforts made to Save Jerdon’s Courser – One of the World’s Rarest Bird

      1. Hi,

        Thank you for sharing the plight of this rare and elusive bird.
        We definitely need to raise the profile of wildlife especially of such species in India.


  1. You forgot to mention Bharat Bhushan’s name.Can you please find out when was it last seen?I am glad to read your note but feel sad aboutthe present status.

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