1477. Tringa subarquata.
The Curlew Stint or Pigmy Curlew.
Scolopax subarquata, Guldenst, Nov. Com. Petrop. xix, p. 471 (1775). Tringa subarquata, Blyth, Cat. p. 269; Jerdon, B. I. iii, p. 689; Hume Henders. Lah to Yark. p. 288 ; Hume, S. F. i, p. 242; ii, p. 297 ; Adam, 8. F. i, p. 396; ii, p. 339 ; Blyth, Birds Burm. p. 156; Armstrong, S. F. iv, p. 342 ; Cockburn, ibid. p. 510 ; Hume & Dav. S. F. vi, p. 460 ; Davids. & Wend. S. F. vii, p. 89 ; Hume, ibid. p. 487; id. Cat. no. 882; Legge, Birds Ceyl. p. 879; Vidal, S. F. ix, p. 85 ; Butler, ibid. p. 429 ; Biddulph, Ibis, 1881, p. 96; 1882, p. 288; Reid, S. F. x, p. 70; Barnes, Birds Bom. p. 354 ; Seebohm, Charadr. p. 419. Pelidna subarquata, Oates, B. B. ii, p. 394. Ancylochilus subarquatus, Sharpe, Cat. B. M. xxiv, p. 586.
Coloration in winter. Broad supercilia, generally meeting across forehead, white; lores, sides of head and neck brownish, streaked darker ; upper plumage ashy brown, with more or less distinct dark shaft-stripes ; wing-coverts with light edges, greater coverts tipped with white; bastard wing, primary-coverts, primaries, and secondaries dark brown ; outer webs of later primaries and of all secondaries with a white border; secondaries white at the base, the amount of white increasing on the inner secondaries ; lower back and middle of rump dark brown, the feathers with a pale or white edge ; sides of rump and upper tail-coverts white ; tail ashy brown ; lower parts and axillaries white; fore neck and upper breast brownish, streaked with dark brown.
In summer the crown, neck, back, and scapulars are rich rufous, with black centres to the feathers; both upper and lower tail-coverts with large black spots ; the lower parts chestnut with hoary edges to the feathers, especially on the abdomen.
Young birds have the feathers of the upper plumage fringed with buff or whitish, the lower surface nearly uniform buff.
Bill black ; irides brown : legs dusky grey (Jerdon).
Length 8.5 ; tail 1.75 ; wing 5 ; tarsus 1.2 ; bill from gape 1.5.
Distribution. This Stint breeds in the far North, but the nest and eggs were almost unknown before the present year ; it migrates in winter to Africa, Southern Asia, and Australia. It is common in the cold season on many parts of the Indian and Burmese coasts; but, except at the period of migration, is rare inland. It arrives in India as early as August, and leaves in May, most of the birds being in rufous breeding-plumage before leaving.
Habits, &c. In India the Curlew Stint generally occurs in flocks, large or small, often associated with other small waders, and fre¬quents for the most part sand-banks or muddy flats on the sea-shore or on the estuaries of large rivers. It is, like most of the genus, excellent eating.