44 FYTCHE'S BAMBOO-PARTRIDGE.
Bambusicola fytchii, Anderson.
Sides of the body covered with large black heart-shaped spots. First ten quills of the wing chiefly rufous or pale chestnut, unmarked.
Vernacular Name :— Vengte , Kuki.
Fytche's Bamboo-Partridge was discovered by Dr. Anderson in Yunnan, and it has since been found to have a considerable range within British territory. It occurs in the Khasi and Garo Hills, the North Cachar and Naga Hills, and in Manipur. I recently procured it in the Northern Shan States, between Maymyo and Thibaw, and Mr. Hildebrand not long ago sent me numerous specimens and one egg of this species from the Southern Shan States, east of Toungyi.
This Partridge is said to be shy, to frequent thick tall grass, and to perch on trees.
Mr. Damant, as quoted by Messrs. Hume and Marshall, says :—" This bird occurs in the Garo, North Cachar, and Naga Hills. I have only found it in heavy forest jungle at heights of not less than 2500 feet; it is generally found in pairs, and is difficult to shoot as it will not rise till hard-pressed."
Mr. J. T. Rollo, who shot a bird of this species in the Northern Shan States, observed nothing peculiar about its habits. In fact, when he shot it, he was under the impression that he had shot a Chinese Francolin.
The egg which Mr. Hildebrand sent me, and which is now deposited in the British Museum, measures 1.42 by 1.12. It is oval, with little or no gloss, and of a uniform pale pinkish buff.
The crown of the head is a rich reddish brown, each feather tipped darker. The hindneck and back are grey with broad oval chestnut streaks. The rump and the tail-coverts are olive-brown finely mottled with pale buff and many of the feathers each with a triangular black mark. The first ten quills of the wing are chiefly pale chestnut, perfectly unmarked. The feathers of the visible portion of the closed wing are olive-brown, mottled with white and each feather with a large black mark and some chestnut near the tip. The tail-feathers are pale rufous mottled and barred with buff, the outer feathers becoming quite plain rufous. The throat and sides of the head are pale chestnut, and there is a pale band over the eye with another black band from the eye down the side of the neck. The foreneck and breast are pale ferruginous spotted with white and chestnut. The remainder of the lower plumage is pale ferruginous with large round or heart-shaped black spots on the lower breast and over the whole of the sides of the body.
Length about 14; wing about 6; tail about 4 1/2 ; legs greenish ; irides brown ; bill dark brown. Weight up to 14 oz.