(374) Chloropsis jerdoni (Blyth).
THE MALABAR GREEN-WINGED CHLOROPSIS.
Chloropsis jerdoni, Fauna B. I., Birds, 2nd ed. vol. i, p. 352.
The present Chloropsis, hitherto known as Jerdon’s Chloropsis, is spread over a great part of India and Ceylon. It is found from Sitapur, Fyzabad and Barti on the North, Baroda and Panch Mahals on the West, and to the Rajmahal Hills and Midnapore on the East.
This is a plains Chloropsis, though it seems to prefer broken country to that which is absolutely level, and it does not occur in the alluvial flats of Eastern Bengal and Assam.
In and round about Raipur Blewitt writes thus of its nidification :—“ The Green Bulbul breeds in July and August. The bird does not preferentially select any one description of tree for its nest, though the greater number secured were taken from mowah trees (Bassia latifolia). The nest is generally firmly affixed at the fork of the end twigs of an upper branch from 15 to 25 feet from the ground. Sometimes, however, eschewing twigs, the bird constructs its nest on the top of the main branch itself, cunningly securing it with the material to the rough exterior surface of the branch.”
Referring to Blewitt’s nests, Hume writes:—“The nest is a small, rather shallow cup, at most 3.1/2 inches in diameter and 1.1/2 in depth ; is composed externally entirely of soft tow-like vegetable fibre which appears to be worked over a light framework of fine roots and slender tamarisk-stems, amongst which some little pieces of lichen are intermingled. There is no attempt at a lining, the eggs being laid on the fine and slender twigs (about the thickness of an ordinary-sized pin) which compose the framework of the nest.” Davidson, quoted by Barnes (Journ. Bomb. Nat. Hist. Soc. vol. vi, p. 251, 1891) says “the bird is very common in the Nassik ghats, above Egutpura, and is found in all the wooded districts of this Presidency. It conceals its nest in a thick tree, such as a mango or a mowa, so that it is in many cases quite impossible to discover it by merely examining the tree from below. The nest, a neat cup, is suspended from the side of a fork or from a succession of twigs. I have found it only at heights from twelve to twenty feet from the ground.”
In Bengal the only record of its breeding is that of Beavan’s nest taken in Manbhom on the 4th April. This nest is described as being “built at the fork of a bough and neatly suspended from it, like a hammock by silky fibres, which are firmly fixed to the two sprigs of the fork and also form part of the bottom and outside of the nest. The inside is lined with dry bents and hairs.”
In Ceylon Wait notes that “it appears to have several broods, beginning in November and December, as soon as the rains have set in, while I have found eggs as late as May. The nest is hard to discover. It is a soft, neatly woven cup, composed of fine strips of grass, or tow-like fibre, suspended by the rim to the fork of a slender twig, and always well concealed by overhanging leaves. It is generally 6 to 10 feet from the ground but occasionally much higher. It lays two eggs.”
In parts of its range in the Bombay Presidency it seems certain that it must have two broods, for Davidson took nests in March and Wilson in April, while their eggs were again taken on many occasions by Davidson in August and September. The. eggs, generally two, sometimes three, are very like tiny eggs of the Oriole. The ground is pure white or white with the faintest tinge of cream, and the spots consist of small purple-black dots mixed with, a few short hair-like lines, always more numerous at the larger end and sometimes forming an indefinite ring. In a very few eggs the spots and lines are reddish-brown instead of black and, in all eggs, there are a few secondary spots and marks of inky-purple or very dark grey, nearly as dark as the primary markings.
Thirty eggs average 21.1 x 15.1 mm. : maxima 23.1 x 15.8 mm. ; minima 19.3 x 14.3 mm.
374. Chloropsis jerdoni Blyth
(374) Chloropsis jerdoni (Blyth).