Page:The Fauna of British India, including Ceylon and Burma (Birds Vol 1).djvu/245

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POMATOHniNUS. 207 two birds constantly utter as thej^ wander about bunting for food. Tbey keep much to low jungle, secoiuinry growth and bamboo- junj>'le and also feed on the ground, turning over the leaves and rubbisb just as the true Laughing-Thrushes do.

(200) Pomatorhinus schisticeps cryptanthus.

COLTABX'S Scimitar-Babbler.

Pomatorhinns schisticeps cryptanthus liaitert, Bull. B. O. C, xxxvi, p. i)5 (191-j) ^ Margherita, Assam).

Vernacular names. Bao hul-a-(/al(io (Cachari).

Description. Differs from the last in baving the upper parts less olive and more rufescent, the red of the net-k and flanks a brighter, ligbter chestnut and, according to Hartert, it is a trifle smaller.

Colours of soft parts. As in the last bird; the iris is often a golden yellow.

Measurements. A. little smaller than scJiistice2'>s; wing 94 to 102 mm.

Distribution. Hills South of the Brahmaputra from the Mikir Hills and Cacliar to Margberita. Nidification similar to that of P. s. schisticeps, breeding from about 2,000 feet upwards to at least 5,000 feet but principally about 4,000 feet. It builds its nest often in bamboo-jungle and also in scrub, edges of cultivation and in forest, especially wbeu there are open glades and streams with grassy banks. The eggs number three or four, very rarel^y five and sixty eggs average about 26"G X 19'2 mm. The breeding season lasts from the end of April to late July.

Habits. Those of the last bird; this race, however, is not a noisy bird and, unless alarmed or excited over some special find, one seldom bears more than a secret low, chuckling note and the usual call of " hoot-hoot-boot." It is, of course, a poor flyer like all the Scinntar-Babblers but I should not call it a skulker as it often feeds piactically in the open bamboo-jungles, where it is very easy to watch it. It can hop at a great pace, proceeding in long bounds and when so engaged might easily be mistaken for a frightened rat. Its food is principally insectivorous, but possibly it also eats grain and seeds.

(201) Pomatorhinus schisticeps mearsi.

Grant's Slaty-headed Scimitar-Babbler.

Pomatorhinus mearsi Og-ilvie-Grant, Bull. B. 0. C, xv, p. 3-5 (1900) (Taungdwiii).

Vernacular names. None recorded.

Description. This race has the chestnut still paler than in