Dafila acuta, Lin.
962. :- Jerdon's Birds of India, Vol. II, p. 803 ; Butler, Guzerat; Stray Feathers, Vol. IV, p. 27 ; Deccan, Stray Feathers, Vol. IX, p. 438 ; Murray's Vertebrate Zoology of Sind, p. 297 ; Game Birds of India, Vol. III, p. 189 ; Swinhoe and Barnes, Central India; Ibis, 1885, p. 137.
THE PINTAIL DUCK.
Length, 22 to 29; expanse, 32 to 37.75 ; wing, 103 to 11.75 ; tail, 4.8 to 9.4; tarsus, 1.5 to 1.8 ; bill from gape, 2.0 to 2.45; weight, 1 10/16 to 2 10/16.
Length, 20 to 22.5; expanse, 32 to 34.5; wing, 9.3 to 10.2 ; tail, 4.2 to 5.5 ; tarsus, 1.45 to 1.7; bill from gape, 2.1 to 2.35; weight, 1 2 /16 to 1 14/16 lbs.
Bill black, sides of upper mandible bluish ; irides dark-brown ; legs greyish plumbeous.
Male, forehead and crown umber-brown, the feathers with paler edges ; the rest of the head, chin, and throat, dark hair-brown, slightly glossed behind the ears with purplish-green forepart of the neck and two lateral streaks, passing upwards the occiput, white ; neck above deep blackish-brown ; the whole of the back beautifully marked with transverse undulating lines of black and greyish-white ; scapulars black ; upper tail-coverts and tail dark cinereous-brown, the edges of the feathers paler, and the two central elongated tail feathers black ; wing-coverts and primaries hair-brown ; lesser wing-coverts smoke-grey; the speculum blackish-green, glossed with purple, bordered above by a pale ferruginous bar, and below by a white one ; tertiaries long and acuminate, velvet-black, with a broadish edging of greyish or yellowish-white; breast and abdomen white, the sides of both with transverse black and whitish lines, and the latter minutely speckled with grey towards the vent; under tail-coverts black.
The female has the head and neck reddish-brown, speckled and streaked with dusky; the upper plumage umber-brown, the feathers edged with reddish-white; wing-coverts brown, edged white ; lower parts pale fulvous, obscurely spotted with brown ; speculum dull without the green gloss; tail, with the two medial feathers, scarcely longer than the others.
The Pintail is common in Sind during the cold season ; fairly common in Guzerat, and Central India ; but is somewhat less common in the Deccan. The Pintail is a very excellent bird for the table and is much sought after in consequence.