1214. Alauda gulgula Ihamarum

(1214) Alauda gulgula Ihamarum Meinertz.
THE KASHMIR SMALL SKY-LARK.
Alauda gulgula gullata, Fauna B. I., Birds, 2nd ed. vol. iii, p. 318.
Alauda gulgula Ihamarum, ibid, vol. viii, p. 663.
The Kashmir Small Sky-Lark breeds throughout Gilgit, Northern Kashmir and the higher ranges of Central Kashmir to Garhwal, Simla States and Kuman.
The ordinary breeding elevation frequented by this Sky-Lark is 8,000 feet upwards. At Dras and Leh Osmaston found it breeding up to 11,600 and, 10,300 feet respectively, and he also records it as very common between 9,000 and 12,000 feet in the Shyok and Indus Valleys in Ladakh.
Like its smaller plains relation, this bird also prefers cultivation and pasture land to any other kind of country, and chooses gently sloping hill-sides or wide rolling platean-land rather than steep hill-sides and rocky bare ground. As regards the nest and its site, there is nothing can be said to differentiate it from those of other Sky-Larks.
The breeding season is from the middle of May to the middle of July, but a few birds breed both earlier and later. In Garhwal Whymper took several nests in the first week of Hay and others, in the end of August. Probably many birds have two broods.
The eggs are typical Sky-Larks’ eggs but, when seen in a series, at once strike one as being darker than those of any other. The ground-colour is most often a pale grey, the whole profusely covered with freckles or small blotches of grey-brown or brown or, rarely, of reddish-brown. In nearly every egg there is some indication, often well defined, of a cap or ring at the larger end. Unusual clutches in my series are (1) a very striking five taken by Whymper— these are olive-grey eggs with large caps, practically black, at the big ends ; (2) a clutch of four taken by Osmaston with a pale stone ground covered equally all over with yellowish-brown, the surface highly glossed.
In shape the eggs are rather broad ovals, sometimes slightly pointed. The texture is much harder and closer than in the eggs of the plains birds and there is usually a decided gloss. It is very noticeable that many of the alleged eggs of this race taken at the lower elevations in Kashmir are very small, very fragile and much less close in texture, leading one to believe that they are the eggs of the plains race. Unusually small eggs taken at high elevations are glossy and hard in texture.
One hundred and forty eggs average 22.5 x 16.8 mm. : maxima 24.3 x 18.4 mm. ; minima 20.5 x 16.0 and 20.7 x 15.4 mm.

BookTitle: 
The Nidification Of Birds Of The Indian Empire
Reference: 
Baker, Edward Charles Stuart. The nidification of birds of the Indian Empire. Vol. 3. 1934.
Title in Book: 
1214. Alauda gulgula Ihamarum
Spp Author: 
Meinertz.
Book Author: 
Edward Charles Stuart Baker
CatNo: 
1214
Year: 
1934
Page No: 
161
Common name: 
Kashmir Small Sky Lark
M_ID: 
21812
M_SN: 
Alauda gulgula lhamarum
Volume: 
Vol. 3
Term name: 
id: 
14291

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