742. Pericrocotus

(742) Pericrocotus solaris solaris Blyth.
THE HIMALAYAN YELLOW-THROATED MINIVET.
Pericrocotus solaris solaris, Fauna B. I., Birds, 2nd ed. vol. ii, p. 326.
This race of Yellow-throated Minivet breeds in the Himalayas, between 3,000 and 7,000 feet, from Nepal to Eastern Assam, both North and South of the Brahmapootra ; Manipur, Chin and Kachin Hills, South to Tenasserim. In the Shan States to the East it is replaced by P. s. ripponi.
This is a forest Minivet and, though in the Cold Weather it may be found in open but well-wooded country, in the breeding season it seems to keep entirely to very lofty evergreen forest. In Sikkim it occurs at 10,000 feet in Summer and may very possibly breed at this elevation.
The only two nests with eggs taken of this bird are one taken by myself on the 3rd June at Hungrum, at about 6,000 feet, which contained two young and an addled egg, and a second, containing three eggs, at Shillong, at about the same elevation.
Both nests were identical ; one was taken from a branch of a stunted Oak-tree and the other from an old Rhododendron, both trees standing in rather open forest with ample undergrowth and every tree covered with parasitic growth of some kind. Both nests were made of the finest elastic twigs, roots and grass-stems, well interwoven and matted with cobwebs. In one there was a rather scanty adornment of grey lichen but, in the other, the outer walls were completely covered with this and, as the nest was wider at the base than the top, it looked like a small natural excrescence of the branch on which it was placed. The second nest was taken on the 1st June and contained three fresh eggs.
The second nest was exactly like the first but was covered all over with grey lichen like that among which it was built. Externally both nests measured about 3 inches in diameter and about an inch in depth, the measurement of the egg-cavity being about 2.1/2 inches by 3/4 inch.
The single egg and the three-clutch probably represent the extremes of coloration. The single egg is about the most densely marked egg of any Minivet that I have seen, whilst the clutch of three is the palest. The single egg has the ground a pale yellow brown, and is densely marked all over with blotches of dark brown and with others, nearly hidden, of purple grey. In fact this egg could be matched with many eggs of the common House-Sparrow.
It measures 22.6 x 14.2, and is undoubtedly abnormally large.
The three eggs contained in the second nest are very pale sea-green, flecked all over with tiny specks of pale reddish which, although numerous, are so small that they do not dominate the colour of the egg, which gives one the impression of being all bright, but pale, sea-green.
In shape they are long, rather pointed ovals, quite glossless in texture.
They measure 19.1 x 14.1, 19.4 x 14.2 and 19.0 x 14.2 mm.
The birds probably breed from the end of April onwards, as all the flocks broke up early or late in April and kept after that month to evergreen forest.

BookTitle: 
The Nidification Of Birds Of The Indian Empire
Reference: 
Baker, Edward Charles Stuart. The nidification of birds of the Indian Empire. Vol. 2. 1933.
Title in Book: 
742. Pericrocotus
Spp Author: 
Solarissolarisblyth.
Book Author: 
Edward Charles Stuart Baker
CatNo: 
742
Year: 
1933
Page No: 
291
Common name: 
Himalayan Yellow Throated Minivet
Volume: 
Vol. 2
id: 
13882

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