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Anthus hodgsoni

The olive-backed pipit (Anthus hodgsoni) is a small bird, about the size of a sparrow, tho maybe a little rounder and fatter. It is also called the Indian pipit or Hodgson's pipit.

These little birds can often be found on the ground, hunting for insects and grubs. These were all in Lions Nature Education Centre near SaiKung town.

The genus name Anthus is from Latin and is the name for a small bird of grasslands. The specific hodgsoni commemorates English diplomat and collector Brian Houghton Hodgson.

Mr Hodgson was born in 1800 (or maybe 1801, no-one is quite sure) and he lived 93 years….almost to the new century. He worked - like so many others - for the East India Company, and has quite a few animals named after him, such was his influence. In fact he was also quite prolific in his own discoveries, and “discovered” and named 39 species of mammals and 124 species of birds which had not been described previously. The zoological collections presented to the British Museum by Hodgson in 1843 and 1858 contained 10,499 specimens. Thats a lot of dried and stuffed animals!

He also sent a huge number of drawings and coloured sketches of Indian animals by three native artists under his supervision, and these can be seen in the Zoological Society of London and the Natural History Museum.

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