978. Pyrrhopicus pyrrhotis.
The Red-eared Bay Woodpecker.
Picus pyrrhotis, Hodgs. J. A. S. B. vi, p. 108 (1837). Gecinus pyrrhotis, Blyth, Cat. p. 59. Blythipicus pyrrhotis, Bonap. Consp. Volucr. Zygod. p. 9; Hume, S. F. vii, p. 520; xi, p. 63 ; id. Cat. no. 176. Venilia pyrrhotis, Horsf. M. Cat. ii, p. 666; Jerdon, B. I. i, p. 291; Godw.-Aust. J. A. S. B. xliii, pt. 2, p. 155; xlv, pt. 2, p. 70 ; Walden in Blyth's Birds Burm. p. 77 ; Inglis, S. F. v, p. 26; Hume & Dav. S. F. vi, p. 142; Oates, B. B. ii, p. 39. Lepocestes pyrrhotis, Hargitt, Cat. B. M. xviii, p. 380.
Coloration. Male. Whole head brown, the forehead, sides of head, and chin paler; feathers of forehead and crown pale-shafted ; a bright crimson half-collar behind the ear-coverts extending more or less completely round the nape ; all upper parts from the nape, with wing-feathers and coverts, barred rufous and black, the rufous bars broadest on the quills, back-feathers fringed with deeper red; tail-feathers rufous with black spots, forming imperfect bars, on both webs, shafts of quills and tail-feathers light red ; lower parts from throat olive-brown, reddish on the breast, dusky on the abdomen ; a few narrow rufous bands on the lower flanks and under tail-coverts.
The female wants the crimson half-collar. The young have pale shaft-lines throughout the head and neck, and traces gf bars on the breast and abdomen.
Bill pale greenish yellow; irides reddish orange to brownish red ; legs and feet very dark green (Davison).
Length 11.5; tail 4; wing 5.75; tarsus 1.1; bill from gape 1.9.
Distribution. From the Eastern Himalayas (Nepal, Sikhim, Dafla hills) to the Malay Peninsula, throughout Burma and other intervening countries.
Habits, &c. An inhabitant of dense underwood, keeping very much to the ground, and rarely ascending a tree unless disturbed. This bird is generally found in pairs or small parties, is very vociferous and has a loud screeching call. The eggs do not appear to have been observed.