The red avadavat, red munia or strawberry finch (Amandava amandava) is a sparrow-sized bird of the Estrildidae family. It is generally found in the open fields and grasslands of tropical Asia, and is popular as a cage bird due to the colorful plumage of the males in their breeding season.
This small bird is easily identified by the rounded black tail and the bill that is seasonally red. The rump is red and the breeding male is red on most of the upper parts except for a black eye-stripe, lower belly and wings. There are white spots on the red body and wing feathers. The non-breeding male is duller but has the red-rump while the female is duller with less of the white spotting on the feathers. It breeds in the Indian Subcontinent in the monsoon season.
This birds are usually seen in small flocks, flying with rapid wingbeats and descending into grass clumps where they are hard to observe. They feed mainly on grass seeds but will also take insects such as termites when they are available
It’s interesting to note that the species name of amandava and the common name of avadavatare derived from the city of Ahmedabad in Gujarat, from where these birds were exported into the pet trade in the earlier days, when the trade was rampant.
The IUCN status of the Red Avadavat is Least Concern.