Ferruginous or Chestnut Wood-Partridge.
Burong trung, Malay.
This pretty bird approaches the typical partridges in shape more than the hill-partridges do, and its bright, chestnut plumage is very distinctive and marks it out from any other found with us ; on the sides and lower back the chestnut is diversified by black markings, which in the latter region indeed obscure the red ; the upper back is variegated with black and white. The only sex difference is the presence of spurs on the legs of the male ; the legs themselves are green. As in so many of our game-birds, more than one spur may be present.
Like the red-crested wood-partridge this is a Malayan bird, gaining a place in the Indian list by penetrating into South Tenasserim ; but it does not range further east than Sumatra in the other direction. It is a lover of heavy jungle, where it feeds on berries, seeds, and insects ; but the places where Mr. Hume's collectors found it were so lonely that there were no inhabitants, and no paths except those made by the local big game ; and they never even saw the birds they got until they were caught. Even the Malays knew nothing about it, so that this, one of our handsomest small game-birds, remains eminently a subject for research. A hen bird weighed only eight ounces, but males would probably be a little heavier ; but the bird is not a big one, measuring well under a foot.