Genus CROSSOPTILON

Genus CROSSOPTILON.

Crossoptilon Hodgs., J. A. S. B., vii, p. 866 (1838).

Type, Phasianus tibetanus Hodgs. = Crossoptilon crossoptilon Hodgs.

The genus Crossoptilon contains the birds popularly known as Eared Pheasants from the fact that their ear-coverts are so prolonged that they stick out behind the head like two small horns or ears.

In this genus the tail-feathers number 20 to 24, very broad at the base, less compressed than in Gennaeus and with the webs very soft, broad and decomposed; the wings are rounded in typical Pheasant shape, the first primary short and the fifth and sixth equal and longest; the sides of the head are naked, covered with papillae and bright red in colour; the legs are powerful and the tarsi are furnished with short blunt spurs in the male.

The sexes are similar in coloration.

At present only one species is known to occur within our limits *, Crossoptilon harmani.
Rothschild shows that this form cannot be considered a race of auritum as the character and structure of the tail-feathers are different. He therefore places it as a subspecies of Crossoptilon crossoptilon (tibetanum auctorum) but it does not seem to me that our present material suffices to prove this, so for the time being I give our bird specific rank.

* Very full descriptions of all the Eared Pheasants are given in the ' Journal of the Bombay Natural History Society,' xxiv, part 4, pp, 625 et seq. (1916), to which sportsmen who shoot specimens of these birds may refer.

BookTitle: 
The Fauna Of British India, Including Ceylon And Burma-birds(second Edition)
Reference: 
Baker, EC S (1922–1930) The fauna of British India, including Ceylon and Burma. Second edition. vol.5 1928.
Title in Book: 
Genus CROSSOPTILON
Book Author: 
Edward Charles Stuart Baker
Year: 
1928
Page No: 
339
M_ID: 
1558
M_SN: 
Crossoptilon
Volume: 
Vol. 5
Term name: 
id: 
4648

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Scratchpads developed and conceived by (alphabetical): Ed Baker, Katherine Bouton Alice Heaton Dimitris Koureas, Laurence Livermore, Dave Roberts, Simon Rycroft, Ben Scott, Vince Smith