470. Scarlet Finch.
Carpodacus erythrinus (Pall.), Nov. Comm. Petrop, xiv. p. 587, pl. 23, fig. 1 (1770) ; Naum. iv. p. 418, Taf. 113, figs. 1. 2 ; Gould, B. of Gt. Brit. iii. pl. 43 ; Newton, ii. p. 174 ; Dresser, iv. p. 75, pl. 195 ; Sharpe, Cat. B. Br. Mus. xii. p. 391 ; Oates, F. Brit. Ind. Birds, ii. p. 219 ; Saunders, p. 197 ; Lilford, iv. p. 72, pl. 35 ; C. erythri¬nus grebnitskii, Stejn. Bull. U.S. Nat. Mus. No. 29, p. 265 (1885) ; Bianchi and Berezovski, Ptitz. Kan-su, &c. p. 133.
Karmin-Gimpel, German ; Verdone bastardo, Ital. ; Tchetche-vitza, Russ.
Male ad. (Russia). Upper parts ashy brown, indistinctly darker striped, except on the rump, and tinged with rose-red ; crown, nape, and rump brighter, and carmine rose ; wings and tail brown, narrowly margined with dull rose ; the wing-coverts more broadly tipped with dull rose, forming a double alar bar ; chin, throat, and upper breast carmine, the rest of the under parts dull white, tinged with rose ; bill greyish horn, darker above ; legs horny brown ; iris hazel brown. Culmen 0.5, wing 3.3, tail 2.5, tarsus 0.75 inch. The female has no red in the plumage, but has the upper parts ashy brown, tinged with olive, the stripes on the head clearer than on the back, the wing-coverts tipped with yellowish white, and the under parts greyish white, striped with brown, the middle of the abdomen nearly white.
Hab. Eastern and north-eastern Europe ; of accidental occur¬rence in western and southern Europe, and Great Britain ; Asia through Siberia to Kamchatka ; in winter south to China, Manchuria, Mongolia, Burma, and India.
In general habits it somewhat resembles the Linnet, is often seen in bushes and low trees near water, and in gardens, and does not seem to seek its food on the ground. Its food consists of the seeds of trees and bushes, less often those of plants, and of tender buds. Its call-note is a clear whistle, and its song, which is uttered from the top of a bush or tree, pleasing and characteristic. The nest, which is placed on a low tree or bush, is rather loosely constructed of dry bents and rootlets, lined with a few horse hairs, and the eggs, 4 to 6 in number, are deposited late in May and are rich blue, sparingly dotted at the larger end with dark red and blackish brown, and measure about 0.79 by 0.6. Specimens from Eastern Asia are as a rule brighter in tinge of red, and have been separated subspecifically under the name of C. grebnitskii, but I have specimens from the Ural and Asia Minor which are as richly coloured as any from Eastern Asia
470. Carpodacus erythrinus
470. Scarlet Finch.