This subfamily, as now constituted, contains Oates's Crateropodinae and the Timaliinae, which I find quite impossible to differentiate by any satisfactory character one from the other.
The great majority of the Timaliinae are very gregarious and go about in flocks of considerable size, a few consort in small flocks, whilst fewer still are only found singly or in pairs. They feed principally on the ground or in bushes and long grass close to it, but some of them also haunt trees in their quest for the insects which form their main diet. Some of the genera comprise birds as noisy as any known, whilst others are birds with sweet notes or are silent. The most prominent characteristics are the very powerful legs and the weak, rounded wings. The head is frequently fully crested, and is generally covered with somewhat erectile feathers even where there is no definite crest. The bill is of almost every conceivable shape. In habits they are non-migratory, though some of the hill forms move up and down the hills under climatic stress and, whilst some species are very bold and haunt freely the vicinity of villages, others are among the most shy.
In the following key an attempt has been made to discriminate between the genera in a way which will be easy for the field naturalist to work out; size and plainly visible features in construction being made use of Key to Genera. A. Tail more than 88 mm. long. a. Bill not so long as head.
a1 Nostrils almost hidden by bristles
b1. Nostrils visible and only partly concealed
by bristles
c1Nostrils not hidden by bristles but some¬times with a few long hairs. a2. Bill not toothed at the extremity. a3. Tail tipped with white or brown . b3. Tail with no white or brown tip. a4. Bill long and slender.
a5. Wing longer than tail
b5 "Wing shorter than tail. a6. Shafts of feathers of forehead short and not glistening .. b6. Shafts of feathers of forehead long and glistening. a7. Upper parts uniform, not streaked. a8 Feathers of breast not
spinous . .
b8. Feathers of breast spin- ous
b7. Upper parts striated
b4. Bill short and thick
b2. Bill toothed at the extremity, c3. Bristles at gape stiff; under parts [p. 230.
d3. Bristles at gape hair-like; under [p. 161.
parts parti-coloured TROCHALOPTERUM,
b. Bill longer than head and much compressed. [p. 205.
d1. Bill less than 50 mm. long POMATORHINUS,
e1 Bill more than 50 mm. long XIPHIRAMPHUS,
B. Tail less than 88 mm. long, more than 45 mm. [p. 224.
c. Wings short and rounded and fatting in close to the body.
f1. Shafts of feathers of forehead stiff.
c2. Tail longer than wing.
e3. Shafts of feathers of crown not
glistening PYCTORHIS, p. 233.
f3. Shafts of feathers of crown glistening.
c4. Bill black and stout TIMALIA, p. 225,
d4. Bill pale-coloured and more slender DUMETIA, p. 228.
d2. Wing longer than tail.
g3. Nostrils rounded and exposed.
e4 Crown dark brown or blackish .. RHOPOCICHLA, p. 281.
f4. Crown rufous or rufous-brown .. MIXORNIS, p. 272.
h3 Nostrils protected by overhanging membrane. [p. 261.
g4. Wing over 70 mm THRINGORHINA,
h4. Wing under 65 mm.
c5. Cul [men curved throughout its length.
c6. Space round the eye feathered STACHYRIS, p. 263.
d6 Space round the eye naked.. CYAXODERMA, p. 271.
d3. Culmen strdghtand bill w edge- shaped STACHYRIDOPSIS,
g1.Shafts of feathers of forehead not stiff- shafted. [p. 267.
e2. Bill stout and straight, deeper at the centre than at the nostrils.
i3.. Rictal bristles well developed.
i4.. Nostrils long, protected by an over-hanging membrane CURSONIA, p. 248.
j4. Nostrils oval and exposed MALACOCINCLA,
j3. Rictal bristles obsolete or only [p. 260.
feebly developed PELLORNEUM, p. 237.
f2.. Bill stout, generally curved through¬out and deeper at the nostrils than in the middle.
k3. Outer edges of primaries uniform.
k4 Nostrils long and overhung by a membrane.
e3. Small bristles overhanging the nostrils; outer tail-feathers less than 12 mm. shorter than
middle pair ALCIPPE, p. 275.
f3. No bristles over nostrils; outer tail-feathers more than 12 mm.
shorter than middle pair.... SCHAENIPARUS, p. 283.
l3. Outer edges of primaries conspi¬cuously parti-coloured.
L4. Nostrils overhung by hairs PSEUDOMINLA, p. 286fc
m4. Nostrils overhung by numerous small hairs; tail strongly graduated. i3 Bill narrow; hind toe and claw
equal FULVETTA, p. 289.
j3. Bill broad ; hind claw shorter
than hind toe LIOPARUS, p. 293.
d. Wings longer, not so rounded and not fitting
close to the body. h1. Wing more than three times length of
tarsus HORIZILLAS, p. 257.
i1 Winer less than three times length of tarsus.
g2. Tail more than three times length of [p. 258.
h2. Tail equal to twice length of tarsus.. AETHOSTOMA, p. 259.
C. Tail under 45 mm.
e. Bill as long as the head; curved downwards. RIMATOR, p. 255.
f. Bill half as long as the head; straighc TURDINULUS, p. 250.

The Fauna Of British India, Including Ceylon And Burma-birds(second Edition)
Baker, EC S (1922–1930) The fauna of British India including Ceylon and Burma. Second edition. vol.1 1922.
Title in Book: 
Book Author: 
Edward Charles Stuart Baker
Page No: 
Vol. 1

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