27. Dendrocitta rufa vagabunda

(27) Dendrocitta rufa vagabunda (Lath.).
Dendrocitta rufa vagabunda, Fauna B. I., Birds, 2nd ed. vol. i, p. 50.
This subspecies of Tree-Pie breeds in the sub-Himalayas from Nepal to Eastern Assam and in the United Provinces, Behar, Bengal and Manipur. Birds of the northern part of the United Provinces, though somewhat indeterminate, seem to be nearest this race.
The breeding season of this Magpie is during May and June but, as with the other races, the season is a very long one and nests may be found with eggs from the end of March well on into August. Many nests are placed in trees in gardens and many others in Mango-orchards ; on the other hand small Sissoo- and Acacia-trees, stand┬Čing all alone in cultivation are favourite sites for nests, though so exposed and conspicuous. Another common site in Behar is in the cactus hedges commonly grown round fields.
The eggs differ in no way from those of the other races of Tree-Pie but I have one clutch of three which, had I not personally seen the parent bird on the nest, I should have thought to be eggs of the Himalayan Tree-Pie. In colour these are a yellow-cream boldly blotched with olive-brown and inky grey, the blotched exceptionally large and most numerous at the larger end of the eggs.
One hundred eggs average 29.0 x21.5 mm. : maxima 32.3 x 22.0 and 31.0 x 23.2 mm. ; minima 25.9 x 20.9 and 31.9 x 20.6 mm.
Both parent birds take part in incubation, as I have shot the cock bird off the eggs. A nest found containing three eggs on the 16th May had four on the 17th and the first young had hatched on the 30th, so presumably incubation lasts about 14 days.

The Nidification Of Birds Of The Indian Empire
Baker, Edward Charles Stuart. The nidification of birds of the Indian Empire. Vol. 1. 1932.
Title in Book: 
27. Dendrocitta rufa vagabunda
Spp Author: 
Book Author: 
Edward Charles Stuart Baker
Page No: 
Common name: 
Bengal Tree Pie
Dendrocitta vagabunda vagabunda
Vol. 1

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