378. Cisticola erythrocephala.
The Red-headed Fantail-Warbler.
Cisticola erythrocephala, Jerd., Blyth, J. A. S. B. xx, p. 523 (1851); Jerd. B. L ii, p. 175; Hume, S. F. v, pp. 94, 351, 406; id. Cat. no. 540; Davison, S. F. x, p. 392; Terry, S. F. x, p. 476. Cisticola exilis, Vig. & Horsf., Sharpe, Cat. B. M. vii, p. 269 (part.).
The Red-headed Grass- Warbler, Jerd.
Coloration. Male. In summer the forehead, crown, and nape are chestnut, shading off into dull rufous, which forms a collar on the hind neck and sides of neck ; back rufous, streaked with black; rump and upper tail-coverts rufous-brown; tail black with white tips ; wings and coverts dark brown, edged with rich fulvous ; sides of the head and the whole lower plumage bright ferruginous.
Female. In summer resembles the male in summer, but the forehead, crown, and upper tail-coverts are black, each feather edged with rufous ; the tail is broadly edged with olive-brown, tipped with dull rufous-white, and subterminally black, these marks being very clear when viewed from below.
The male and female in winter resemble each other and are like the female in summer.
Iris burnt sienna ; lower mandible, legs, feet, and claws fleshy ; upper mandible pale brown (Davison).
Length Wing 1.9; tarsus .75; bill from gape .55; in summer the tail is 1.5, and the total Length of the bird about 4; in winter the tail is 2, and the total Length about 4.5.
The bird described by Jerdon appears to have been a male in summer plumage, with a tail of the Length it usually is in winter.
The young are like the adults in winter, but differ in being rich yellowish below.
Distribution. This bird has been found at Saugor in the Central Provinces ; on the Brahmagiris in Coorg, and the Peria Forest hills; in the Karkur Pass leading from the Wynaad into Lower Malabar; and upon the Palni hills, at Mount Nebo, Kukal, and Kodaikanal; in all which places there is no doubt this is a resident species. It frequents grass like the other Fantail-Warblers.