1864. Columba pulchricollis

(1864) Columba puchricollis Hodgs.
Columba pulchricollis, Fauna B. I., Birds, 2nd ed. vol. v, p. 230.
This fine Pigeon is found from Nepal through Sikkim, Bhutan and Tibet between 7,000 and 10,000 feet ; in Assam between 5,000 feet and the highest peaks, the Shan States and Formosa. Robinson says that it is also found on the coast and islands of the Malay Peninsula but, presumably, only in Winter.
Personally I have always found this to be a very shy retiring bird during the breeding season, keeping to very thick woods where, as it is a very silent bird, it escapes notice, and it may be really less rare than one imagines it to be. I took two nests of this bird at Hangrum in 1896 at an elevation of about 5,000 feet ; they were both of the ordinary Wood-Pigeon type, mere rough platforms of small twigs, coarsely but strongly interlaced, but they had one very distinctive and unexpected feature, namely, a sparse lining of feathers, which may have been quite abnormal. The nests were rather large, nearly 9 inches in diameter ; there was little or no de¬pression for the eggs, these laying among the feathers and prevented from rolling by the irregularities in the interlacing of the twigs.
The nests were in rather unique positions. Both, were in stunted Oaks (Quercus serratifolia), one resting on a great mass of flowering orchids (Dendrobium chrysotoxicum and D. dalhousianum) and the other on a mass of pendent green moss and Hart’s tongue fern.
They had selected very beautiful surroundings, each tree growing among a wealth of bracken, caladiums, jasmines, begonias and maiden¬hair fem, while the trees themselves were clothed in long streamers of vivid green moss, mixed everywhere with a variety of orchids.
These two eggs measured 37.0 x 27.0 and 41.2 x 29.8 mm.
In later years two other similar neats were found by me, and these again hod feathers in the base. I have called them linings, but perhaps a more correct description would be to say that fairly large feathers had been used, in addition to twigs, in the upper part of the nest. The feathers were those of the Pigeons and a few of Barbets and other birds.
Masson obtained one egg from a nest in Oak-forest near Darjiling at about 8,000 feet. He says nothing about feathers in this nest ; nor does Osmaston refer to them in his description of the nests which he took at Darjiling, and of which he merely writes : “they were of the ordinary platforms of sticks and contained each one bird” (Journ. Bomb. Nat. Hist. Soc. vol. xv, p. 515, 1904) ; they were built 6 and 10 feet respectively from the ground in small trees.
Eggs have been taken in June and August, and young, well advanced, in the former month, so that May to August evidently forms the breeding season.
Five eggs average 37.6 x 27.4 mm. : maxima 42.3 x 80 mm. ; minima 37.0 x 27.0 mm. A larger series is sure to give a much bigger average.

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: 
1864. Columba pulchricollis
Spp Author: 
Book Author: 
Edward Charles Stuart Baker
Page No: 
Common name: 
Ashy Wood Pigeon
Ashy Wood Pigeon
Columba pulchricollis
Vol. 4

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