326. Dicrurus annectens.
The Crow-billed Drongo
Buchanga annectans, Hodgs. Ind. Mev. i, p. 326 (1837). Edolius affinis, Blyth, J. A. S. B. xi, p. 174 (1842). Dicrurus balicassius (Linn.), Blyth, Cat. p. 202; Horsf. & 31. Cat. i, p. 152 ; Jerd. B. I. i, p. 430; Hume, S. F. ii, p. 209. Dicrurus annectens (Hodgs.), Blyth Wald. Birds Burm. p. 131; Sharpe, Cat. B. 31. iii, p. 231 ; Tweedd. Ibis, 1878, p. 72; Hume & Dav. S. F. vi, pp. 213, 509; Hume, Cat. no. 279; Oates, S. F. x, p. 201; id. B. B. i, p. 217.
Coloration. The whole plumage black glossed with steel-blue, except on the lores, ear-coverts, the inner webs of the quills, axillaries, and under wing-coverts.
Birds not quite adult have the axillaries and under wing-coverts tipped with white, and birds still younger have the under tail-coverts also tipped with white.
Young birds of the year have the whole lower plumage from the breast to the tad barred with white.
The change from the young to the adult plumage consists entirely in the gradual disappearance of the white marks on the lower plumage; but there is a tendency to retain these marks in some degree even in old age; and birds entirely black are comparatively seldom met with.
Bill and legs black; iris brown (Jerdon).
Length about 10.5 ; tail up to 5.5 ; wing 5.6 ; tarsus .8 ; bill from gape 1.2.
Distribution. The lower levels of Nepal and Sikhim, extending into the plains of Oudh; thence along the base of the Himalayas to Dibrugarh in Assam. From this Province the species apparently extends through Burma and the Malay peninsula to Singapore and Sumatra; but it has only been recorded with certainty from Lower Pegu, the southern portion of Tenasserim, and Malacca. It is found in Cochin China.
This species appears to be, in some measure, migratory; but its movements are difficult to trace. I have seen birds killed in Oudh from December to February; at Dibrugarh in June; in Lower Pegu in October; in Tenasserim from November to May; and at Malacca from August to April. I have seen D. annectens in Pegu only in October.
Habits, &c. From what I observed of this bird in Pegu, its Habits do not differ in any respect from those of the next. Nothing is known of its nidification.