1444. Aegialitis asiatica.
The Caspian Sand-Plover.
Charadrius asiaticus, Fall. Reis. Buss. Reichs, ii, p. 715 (1773); Seebohm, Charadr. p. 144. Eudromias asiaticus, Hurting, Ibis, 1870, p. 202, pl. v. Aegialitis asiatica, Hume, S. F. vii, p. 438; id. Cat. no. 845 quat.; id. S. F. ix, p. 79 ; Barnes, Birds Bom. p. 329. Ochthodromus asiaticus, Sharpe, Cat. B. M. xxiv, p. 230.
Coloration. In winter plumage the upper parts are brown; forehead, supercilia, lores, cheeks, chin, and throat buffy white ; area behind eye and ear-coverts light brown; primary-coverts, primaries, and secondaries blackish brown, a little white on the outer webs of a few inner primaries near the base; shafts of 1st primary and of subterminal portion of 2nd white, of the 3rd dark throughout; tail-feathers brown, darker near the end and tipped white (the dark subterminal band is more distinct in summer plumage); fore neck and breast brown ; lower breast and abdomen white; wing-lining brown and white mixed; axillaries white.
In summer plumage the fore neck and upper breast are chestnut, passing into blackish on the lower border. Young birds have dull rufous edges to the upper plumage.
Bill black ; iris dusky hazel; feet greenish olive (Emin Pacha).
Length 7.5 ; tail 2 ; wing 5.5 ; tarsus 1.6 ; bill from gape .9.
Distribution. This Sand-Plover breeds on the Caspian and Aral Seas and in Central Asia, and passes the winter in Africa, as far south as Cape Colony. It is also found in the Persian Gulf. The only specimen yet recorded in India was shot by Vidal near Ratnagiri. The present species is an inhabitant of sandy plains as much as of sea-coasts, or may even prefer the former.