35. Aegithaliscus erythrocephalus.
The Red-headed Tit.
Parus erythrocephalus, Fig. P. Z. S. 1831, p. 23; Gould, Cent. pl. 30, Aegithaliscus erythrocephalus ( Vig.), Jerd. B. I. ii, p. 270 ; Hume, N. & E. p. 401; id. Cat. no. 634; Sadly, S. F. viii, p. 322; Oates in Humes N. E. 2nd ed. i, p. 30. Orites erythrocephalus (Vig.), Blyth, Cat. p. 104; Horsf. & M. Cat. i, p. 374. Acredula erythrocephala ( Vig.), Gadow, Cat. B. M. viii, p. 56.
Coloration. Forehead, crown, and nape chestnut; a broad eyebrow from the eye to the nape white; lores, round the eye, ear- coverts, a band under the eyebrow and a large round patch on the throat black; chin and a moustachial streak white; remainder of the lower plumage ferruginous, with a paler band across the breast next to the black of the throat; upper plumage and wing-coverts bluish grey ; primary wing-coverts and winglet dark brown ; quills brown-, narrowly edged with bluish grey ; tail dark brown suffused with bluish grey, the outer web of the outermost feather white, the inner tipped white ; the next two feathers tipped with white.
Bill black ; gape fleshy; iris pale yellow or yellowish creamy; feet buffy yellow; claws livid (Scully).
Length about 4.2 ; tail 2 ; wing 2 ; tarsus .6 ; bill from gape .35.
Distribution. Throughout the Himalayas from Hazara to Bhutan, generally at elevations of from 6000 to 10,000 feet. South of the Bramaputra River this species is replaced by the next.
Habits, &c. Breeds from March to May, constructing a roundish ball of a nest of moss, lichen, and roots in the branch of an oak or a deodar and occasionally in tufts of grass and low bushes. The eggs, four to eight in number, are pinkish, dotted with reddish in a zone round the larger end; they measure .56 by .45.