Subfamily PICINAE

This contains the true Woodpeckers, with very stout shafts to the tail-feathers, the points of which are pressed against the bark of trees when the birds are climbing or tapping to get at insects. The tail is frequently much worn, and hence varies considerably in length. Woodpeckers seldom perch, they cling to the stems and branches of trees with the tail always downward, and they usually ascend and descend diagonally. They have a peculiar undulating flight easily recognized. The Indian genera are numerous.

Key to the Genera.

a. Primaries spotted or banded.
a1. Nostrils concealed by plumes.
a2. Toes 4.
a3. Mantle wholly or partly green, back not barred.
a4. Culmen nearly straight, a distinct nasal ridge………………………GECINUS, p. 18.
b4. Culmen curved, nasal ridge obsolete………………………CHRYSOPHLEGMA, p. 27,
b3. Mantle chiefly crimson, back barred across………………………CALLOLOPHUS, p. 29.
c3. Mantle black and white.
c4. Nasal ridge less than half length of bill, and at base nearer commissure than culmen ………………………HYPOPICUS, p. 32.
d4. Nasal ridge half length of bill or more, and at base not nearer commissure than culmen.
a5. Second primary shorter than sixth.
a6. Primaries exceed second¬aries by length of culmen or more………………………DENDROCOPUS, p. 33.
b6. Primaries, exceed second¬aries by less than length of culmen………………………LIOPICUS, p. 43.
b5. Second primary longer than sixth………………………IYNGIPICUS, p. 44.
b2. Toes 3.
d3. Mantle green or red………………………GECINULUS, p. 30.
e3. Mantle golden olive………………………GAUROPICOIDES, p. 63.
b1. Nostrils exposed.
c2. Mantle rufous or crimson, more or less banded.
f3. Culmen nearly straight, tip truncated………………………PYRRHOPICUS, p. 49.
g3. Culmen curved, tip pointed………………………MICROPTERNUS, p. 54.
d2. Mantle -wholly or partly golden olive or crimson, not banded.
h3. Toes 4.
e4. Hallux well developed, half length of second digit………………………CHRYSOCOLAPTES, p. 64.
f4. Hallux small, about a second digit………………………BRACHYPTERNUS, p. 58.
i3. Toes 3………………………TIGA, p. 61.
e2. Mantle black or brown and buff………………………MIGLYPTES, p. 52.
b.. Primaries without spots or bands.
c1. Tertiaries with large spots; size small………………………HEMICERCUS, p. 68.
d1. All quills unspotted; size large.
f2. Plumage mostly ashy grey HEMILOPHUS, p. 70.
g2. Plumage mostly black THRIPONAX, p. 72.

BookTitle: 
The Fauna Of British India including Ceylon and Burma
Reference: 
Blanford, William Thomas, ed. The Fauna of British India: Including Ceylon and Burma. Vol.3 1895.
Title in Book: 
Subfamily PICINAE
Book Author: 
William Thomas Blanford
Year: 
1895
Page No: 
15
Volume: 
vol. 3
id: 
1295

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