1862. Columba elphinstonii

(1862) Columba elphinstonii (Sykes).
Columba elphinstonii, Fauna B. I., Birds, 2nd ed. vol. v, p. 228.
This Pigeon is confined to the hill-tracts on the South-West of India from Kanara to Cape Comorin. Col. Sykes also obtained it in the Deccan, but Capt. Blaxland’s report of its occurrence on the Mahanadi and Godavery Rivers has not yet been confirmed.
It is a bird of high elevation forests, breeding both in the “sholas (thickly wooded valleys) and in the more extensive upland Woods on the Nilgiris and other hill ranges. On the Nilgiris Miss Cockburn, Davison, Cardew, Rhodes Morgan and others have taken nests with eggs and young at elevations of 5,000 feet upwards, and Packard took them up to 7,000 feet, while Howard Campbell obtained two eggs from two nests at about 4,000 feet.
In the Palnis Macgregor and Capt. Horace Terry found them breeding still lower, and Stewart informs me that they breed in the Travancore ranges from 4,000 feet also but that he has only once taken an egg.
Davison records: “This Wood-Pigeon breeds on the Nilgiris and its slopes, breeding rather late in the year. The nest, which is merely a platform of dried twigs, is usually placed in some thick thorny bush or mass of cane from about 12 to 20 feet from the ground. I believe that this Pigeon, like the other Fruit-Pigeons, only lays one egg.” This building in comparatively low positions is confirmed by others. Howard Campbell found them breeding on high bushes in sholas ; Rhodes Morgan remarks that they nest 8 or 10 feet from the ground, while Packard took an egg from a bush 15 feet up. Miss Cockburn, however, says that they breed “on high trees in dense woods.”
Most eggs are laid in May and June, but the season lasts from March to July, so some birds may lay twice.
A single egg is laid and I have no record of more than this.
Nine eggs average 38.4 x 26.8 mm. : maxima 38.8 x 29.0 and 37.0 x 30.0 mm. ; minima 36.0 x 29.0 and 37.9 x 26.6 mm.

The Nidification Of Birds Of The Indian Empire
Baker, Edward Charles Stuart. The nidification of birds of the Indian Empire. Vol. 4. 1935.
Title in Book: 
1862. Columba elphinstonii
Spp Author: 
Book Author: 
Edward Charles Stuart Baker
Page No: 
Common name: 
Nilgiri Wood Pigeon
Nilgiri Wood Pigeon
Columba elphinstonii
Vol. 4

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