(1143) Delichon urbica whiteleyi.
The Siberian House- Martin.
Chelidon whiteleyi Swinh., P. Z. S., 1862, p. 320 (Pekin). Chelidon lagopus. Blanf. & Oates, ii, p. 270.
Vernacular names. None recorded.
Description. Differs from the European House-Martin in having the longest tail-coverts pure white; under wing-coverts and axillaries dark brown.
Colours of soft parts. As in the other races.
Measurements. "Wing 104 to 111 mm.; tail 50 to 53 mm.; tarsus about 11 to 12 mm.; culmen about 6 mm.
Distribution. Siberia from the Yenesei District to Manchuria. In Winter to South China and Indo-Burmese countries, once in Burma and once in Cachar. Oates thinks he saw large flocks of this Martin in Pegu and 1 frequently saw small parties of a Martin in Assam which may have been of this race.
Nidification. Breeds from May to July, but Smirnoff took a few eggs as late as August in the Yenesei district. The nests are generally built on houses, temples, etc. A fine series of eggs sent me by Smirnoff and others in the Dresser collection cannot be distinguished from those of the other races. Thirty-five eggs average 19.4 x 13.3 mm.: maxima 22.5 X 13.0 and 18.4 x 13.9 mm.; minima 17.1 X 13.0 mm.
Habits. This is a truly migratory Martin and probably occurs much more frequently than is at present known. The flocks met with in Assam arrived about the last week in October but, after haunting some places for a few days, passed on and were not seen again until the following March or April on their return journey North. They roosted at night in the thatch of my bungalow for two or three nights in succession and their notes, flight and actions were all just like those of the home bird.