1095. Caprimulgus indicus.
The Jungle Nightjar.
Caprimulgus indicus, Latham, Ind. Orn. ii, p. 688 (1790); Gray in Hardw. Ill. Ind. Zool. i, p. 34; Blyth, J. A. S. B. xiv, p. 208 ; Jerdon, Ill. Ind. Orn. pl. 24; Blyth, Cat. p. 82; Horsf. & M. Cat. i, p. 113; Jerdon, B. I. i, p. 192; Stoliczka, J. A. S. B. xxxvii, pt. 2, p. 19; Butler, S. F. iii, p. 454; v, pp. 218, 227; ix, p. 380; Blyth, Birds Burm. p. 83; Morgan, Ibis, 1875, p. 313; Fairbank. S. F. iv, p. 254; Davidson & Wend. 8. F. vii, p. 77 ; Ball, ibid. p. 202; Hume, Cat. no. 107; Vidal, 8. F. ix, p. 48; Davidson, S. F. x, p. 294; C. H. T. Marshall, Ibis, 1884, p. 409 ; Barnes, Birds Bom. p. 89; id. Jour. Bom. N. H. Soc. i, p. 61; iv, p. 7, pl. fig. 107; Oates in Hume's N. & E. 2nd ed. iii, p. 40. Caprimulgus cinerascens, Vieill. Tabl. Enc. Meth. p. 546 (1823); id. Nouv. Diet. d'Hist. Nat. x, p. 283. Caprimulgus jotaka, Temm. & Schley. Faun. Jap., Aves, p. 37, pl. 12 (1847) ; Wald. in Blyth's Birds Burm. p. 83; Godw.-Aust. J. A. S. B. xliii, pt. 2, p. 153; xlv, pt. 2, p. 68; Hume & Dav. S. F. vi, p. 56; Hume, Cat. no. 107 bis; id. S. F. xi, p. 38; Scully, S. F. viii, p. 236; Oates, B. B. ii, p. 21; Hartert, Cat. B. M. xvi, p. 552.Caprimulgus kelaarti, Blyth, J. A. S. B. xx, p. 175 (1851); Jerdon, B. I. i, p. 193; Holdsworth, P. Z. S. 1872, p. 421; Morgan, Ibis, 1875, p. 314; Hume & Bourdillon, S. F. iv, p. 381; Hume, S. F. vii, p. 203 ; id. Cat. no. 108; Legge, Birds Ceyl. p. 337; Butler, S. F. ix, p. 380; Davison, S. F. x, p. 348; Terry, ibid. p. 470; Oates in Hume's N. & E. 2nd ed. iii, p. 41; Hartert (C. jotakae subsp.), Cat, B. M. xvi, p. 555.
The Jungle Nightjar, The Neilgherry Nightjar, Jerdon.
Coloration. Male. General colour above dark brown, more spotted and blotched with black than other Indian species ; crown, nape, and back with black spots and streaks throughout; a partial collar o£ buff: spots, sometimes obsolete; the black patches on the scapulars generally distinct, but the buff edgings broken up; rounded, fulvous or whitish spots on the wing-coverts ; black cross-bands on tail generally well-marked; first four primaries with a white spot, that on first primary very small; all the tail-feathers except the middle pair with a subterminal white band, the extreme tip dusky or black; a large white spot forming a band across the throat, and a buff moustachial stripe; chin to breast very dark, with a few buff or whitish spots ; abdomen and lower tail-coverts buff, banded with darker brown, closely in front, more distantly behind.
Female. No white tips to tail-feathers; spots on the primaries small and rufous ; throat-band buff.
Bill vinous brown, paler at the gape, the tip black; iris deep brown; legs and feet vinous brown.
Dimensions variable: in a large Assamese bird (C. jotaka), length 12.5, tail 5.6, wing 8.5, tarsus .65 ; in small Ceylon specimens (C. kelaarti), length about 10.5,tail 5.25, wing 7.25, tarsus .6. Tarsus feathered throughout.
Hume and others have shown that although typical C. kelaarti from Ceylon is greyer and smaller than ordinary Indian specimens (C. indicus), it is impossible to distinguish them. Himalayan and Assamese specimens are larger still, and Japanese typical C. jotaha largest of all, but there is a complete gradation, and all appear to belong to one species. According to Hume there is a difference in the call between C. jotaha and C. indicus (C. kelaarti) ; but it is difficult to find any distinctive character in the birds.
Distribution. From the Amur and Japan to Cochin China, Malacca, Java, Borneo, and New Guinea ; and locally throughout India and Ceylon, this Nightjar being found in the lower Himalayas, the Punjab, Mount Abu, the forest tracts of the Indian Peninsula, and especially the hills of Southern India and Ceylon, and scattered sparingly throughout Burma.
Habits, &c. In many places this bird is said to be migratory. It is especially a forest form, appearing at the edge of forest in the evening, and uttering its call in the twilight. The breeding-season in India appears to be generally from March to May, but eggs have been taken at Raipur in August—much like those of other Nightjars, salmon-coloured to creamy-white with pale purplish and darker brown markings, and they measure about 1.15 by .86.