673. Olcyornis olivaceus poliogenys

(673) Olcyornis olivaceus poliogenys (Brooks).
Anthipes olivaceus poliogenys, Fauna B. I., Birds, 2nd ed. vol. ii, p. 247.
Olcyornis olivaceus poliogenys, ibid. vol. viii, p. 631.
This subspecies of the Olive Flycatcher extends from Sikkim Eastwards to the whole of Assam, North and South of the Brahma¬pootra, through Manipur, Lushai Hills and Chin Hills as far as the Irrawaddy. As I have explained (vide supra), I cannot separate saturatior Robinson and Kinnear from poliogenys, so the above area remains as given in the ‘Fauna-’
With the exception of Coltart, Primrose and myself, no one seems to have found the nest of this Flycatcher. In North Cachar and the Khasia Hills it is common, but I failed to find many nests, possibly because I worked for it at too high elevations. My first nest was taken at about 3,000 feet and it may rarely breed as high as 5,000, but, undoubtedly, most birds in Assam breed from the foot-hills and the broken ground at their base up to about 2,500 feet. In Lakhimpur Coltart and I found many nests at about 1,000 feet elevation. Here they bred both in the well-covered ravines and in patches of jungle of almost any description, as well as in the wet tropical forests. I also once found a nest in a ravine in scrub and bamboo-jungle, but this was, I think, exceptional.
Nests and eggs are exactly like those of Cyornis rubeculoides, the female of which also very closely resembles that of A. o. poliogenys.
The nest is placed in a hollow in a bank or among boulders, or else in some hole in a dead stump or in a rotten bough or trunk of a still living tree. Always, however, it is low down, and I have no record of any nest more than three feet above the ground. Primrose, who took some nests of this Flycatcher in the Gooma Reserve, a forest in the plains of the Goalpara district, found them always placed among or under boulders on banks in the forest, the birds selecting ravines with rocky banks well in the interior of thick forest.
The nests taken by the three of us seem to have been all of the same description, well-made compact cups of which the main material was green moss, mixed in varying degree with dead leaves and grass. Some nests have a good many of these, more especially in the base and lower part of the nest, while others have only an odd scrap or two, possibly picked up with the moss. The lining is generally a good one of fine roots but, at other times, it consists merely of tiny soft bits of the same moss as that contained in the body of the nest. The egg-cavity measures, roughly, 2 to 2.1/2 inches in diameter by about half that in depth and is very neat and well finished, but outwardly the nest may be either a beautiful rounded cup or it may fit into the hollow in which it is placed.
The breeding season lasts from the middle of April to the end of June, most eggs being laid before the 15th June.
These could not possibly be distinguished from those of the genus Cyornis. The ground-colour is a pale olive-green, olive-yellow or olive-buff, always dull ; the whole of this is practically obliterated by tiny specks of reddish, sometimes rather light, sometimes a deep red-brown. Many eggs, unless carefully examined, look uni¬coloured olive-brown, reddish-brown or dark brown ; a few have the freckles and small blotches fairly distinct and, very rarely, they are more numerous at the larger end, where they form rings or caps.
In shape the eggs are broad, obtuse ovals, the texture is fine and close and the surface has a decided gloss.
Forty eggs average 18.5 x 14.6 mm. : maxima 20.4 x 15.3 and 19.3 x 16.0 mm. ; minima 16.8 x 13.4 mm.
Both sexes share in incubation but I have no knowledge as to which sex builds the nest.

The Nidification Of Birds Of The Indian Empire
Baker, Edward Charles Stuart. The nidification of birds of the Indian Empire. Vol. 2. 1933.
Title in Book: 
673. Olcyornis olivaceus poliogenys
Spp Author: 
Book Author: 
Edward Charles Stuart Baker
Page No: 
Common name: 
Sikkim Olive Flycatcher
Pale-chinned Blue Flycatcher
Cyornis poliogenys
Vol. 2
Term name: 

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