Through my experience with birds in the last few years I have come to know that the waders are more territorial than the others. Almost all waders maintain and try to defend their own territories in the water bodies and its surrounding areas. This they do for two reasons.
1. To ensure that their breeding grounds are out of danger.
2. To ascertain that their feeding areas are safe and secure.
The territorial fight of the bird which i am going to try to write something on here does not breed in this country. Its name is Black-tailed Godwit (Limosa limosa). On some previous occasion I wrote something about this bird in this section. [Interested readers may visit the link.. http://www.indiawilds.com/forums/showthread.php?16903.] As these birds breeds out of this country I have not been lucky enough to witness the fight to uphold their own breeding territories. But I saw one such territorial fight of the Black-tailed Godwits for defending their territories; that was a real thrilling one!
Why do they fight for the feeding ground after all? One obvious answer to this question is that more than one birds feed on the same food and many such birds search for their food in the same area. Every bird tries to maintain its predominance within its feeding ground and tries to fend off others who forage on the same food and in the same area. For this they fight with some other species as well when their list of food coincides. But I have not seen Black-tailed Godwits to fight with other species that much, they are mostly seen to fight with themselves only.
Here, when we see the pictures, one may ask whether the fight was really for the feeding ground or was out of attraction to a possible partner of the opposite sex. So far as I know the Black-tailed Godwits do not adhere to their previous or new partners when they migrate in the non-breeding seasons. They fight for their partner in their homeland only in the breeding season. In spite of all these we must admit that we are unaware of many more things of the world of birds.
In the first picture two birds are trying to show their territorial display; before they start fighting with each other. Unfortunately, I did not see the their fighting actions from the very beginning. And so, I cannot say which one entered which one’s territory.
Here I guess that the bird on the right side is either juvenile or a sub-species Limosa limosa melanuroides. The difference between the plumage of the two birds is clearly visible. I would be thankful if someone throws some light on this.