(1300) Dicaeum trigonostigma rubropygium.
The Tenasserim Orange-belled Flower-pecker.
Dicaeum trigonostigma rubropygium Stuart Baker. Bull. B. O. O., xli, p. 108 (1921) (Mergui). Dicaeum trigonostigma. Blanf. & Oates. ii, p. 377.
Vernacular names. None recorded.
Description. - Male. Forehead, crown, nape, upper back, sides of the head and neck deep grey-blue; lower back flaming scarlet grading to scarlet-orange on the rump and shorter upper tail-coverts; longer tail-coverts grey-blue ; tail black; visible portions of the closed wing like the upper back; concealed portions black; chin, throat and upper breast pale grey; lower breast, abdomen, flanks and under tail-coverts bright orange; axillaries and under wing-coverts chalky-white.
Colours of soft parts. Iris brown; bill, legs and feet black.
Measurements. Wing45 to 51 mm.; tail 24 to 27 mm.; tarsus about 13 mm.; culmen 9 to 10 mm.
Female. Upper plumage olive-green, changing to orange-yellow on the rump, where the tips of the feathers are orange-red; chin, throat, upper breast and flanks ashy, tinged with green; lower breast, abdomen and under tail-coverts yellow ; wing-coverts like the back; quills black, edged with the colour of the back; tail black.
Colours of soft parts. Iris grey to dark brown; upper mandible dark horny-brown, paler and reddish at the base and on the lower mandible; legs and feet greenish-horny to dark plumbeous.
Distribution. South Burma; South-West Siam; Malay Peninsula, North of 10° lat.; Lakhimpur in Assam.
Nidification. We obtained three or four nests of this Flower-pecker in the Dibrugarh District of Assam and Kellow took others near Perak in the Federated Malay States. All were built on the fringes, or in glades, of heavy evergreen-forest and were attached to branches of tall trees at about 35 to 40 feet from the ground; the one exception was on a bush close to a jungle-track about five feet Prom the ground. The nests differ from those of the preceding species only in being larger. They are equally beautiful and equally well hidden. The eggs can only be distinguished from those of D. cruentatum by their greater size. Ten eggs average 15.5 x 11.25 mm.: maxima 17.6 X 11.9 mm.; minima 14.3 X 10.8 mm. In Assam most were taken in April and May and in the Malay States in February and May.
Habits. Those of the genus. The distribution of this Flower-pecker is rather remarkable as it occurs in Assam, in a very restricted area, and then does not again appear until we get to the Karen Hills and Pegu. Possibly it will eventually be found over the whole of the intervening country where well forested. It occurs and breeds in the plains and must ascend the hills to at least 4,000 feet.