A commemorative postage stamp on the Lesser Florican :
Issued by India
Issued on Dec 20, 1989
Description of Designs : The stamp has been designed by India Security Press, Nashik Road, the first day cover is by Sabrina Siga and cancellation by Alka Sharma.
Type : Stamp, Postal Used
Watermark : No
Colour : Multicolour
Denomination : 200 Paise
Stamp Overall Size : 3.91 x 2.90 cms.
Stamp Print Size : 3.55 x 2.54 cms.
Perforation : 13 x 13
Paper : Imported un W/M Adh. gravure coated stamp paper
Stamps Printed : 15,00,000 in sheets of 35
Printed : India Security Press
Printing Process : Photogravure
- A small bustard with the typically longish bare legs and horizontal carriage of body, about the size of a domestic hen, the Likh Florican, is a bird of the tropical monsoon areas of Punjab, Gujarat, Rajasthan, West Pakistan and south through the Peninsula to Mysore and Madras. It can be seen wandering erratically eastward through Uttar Pradesh, Nepal, Bihar, Orissa, West Bengal to slightly east of Teesta river in the Bhutan Duars. This bird is rare in the coastal strip between the Western Ghats and the sea.
- The male Likh Florican is chiefly black and white with a tuft of narrow spatulate-ended upcurving black plumes projecting behind the head, three on either side. The female species has overall sandy buff, mottled and with blackish arrowhead marked on the back. It has two parallel blackish stripes down the centre of the throat and fore-neck. The forehead and crown are black with a pale median stripe or centre parting. There are no head plumes. The female is slightly larger than the male.
- The Likh Florican is much less shy and wild than other bustards. When flushed, it usually flies a considerable distance, running on immediately on alighting and difficult to flush a second time. Its wing-beats are more rapid than those of other bustards. It is capable of astonishing turn of speed when flushed by beaters and chased by ‘waiting on’ Peregrine or other falcon. For safety, it normally relies on lying low and running through cover.
- The food habits of the Likh Florican make it a largely insect-eating bird, mainly feeding on grasshoppers, beetles and sometimes centipedes, lizards and frogs. It also takes vegetable matter like shoots of crops, grass and herbs, seeds, drupes and berries. At certain seasons it feeds vary largely on blister beetles, tainting the flesh which is otherwise highly esteemed as a table delicacy. Insects secured on the ground and on grasses are taken by jabbing at them with pointed bill or leaping up in the air to snap at, such as a flying grasshopper.
- The male Likh Florican emits a characteristic harsh frog-like croak during his jumping display, and a short whistle-like call when frightened. The croak of the female is similar but distinctive. It breeds chiefly during July, August and September as soon as sufficient grass cover becomes available in otherwise dry areas. It has no special nest; eggs, normally 4, are laid on the bare ground often even without any depression, in some bare patch of short grass or in corps.
- Text : Courtesy by Dr. Salim Ali.