778. Dicrurus ccerulescens leucopygialis

(778) Dicrurus coerulescens leucopygialis Blyth.
THE WHITE-VENTED DRONGO.
Dicrurus coerulescens leucopygialis, Fauna B. I., Birds, 2nd ed. vol. ii, p. 366.
This race of coerulescens, if it is a race, and not a distinct species, is confined to the island of Ceylon.
Wait says it “is common all over the island, up to about 4,500 feet, except in heavy forest, or in the Jaffna Peninsula and that part of the Mannar district where the Black Drongo occurs.
“A familiar bird in the cultivated parts of the country ; it may even be seen in Colombo gardens. It occurs also in open woods, the outskirts of chenas in the jungle, round tanks, etc.”
Its nidification is typical of the genus. The nest is a small edition of that of the Black Drongo, similar in shape, materials, and site. More often than not, however, it is placed fairly low down in smallish trees—rubber-trees are a great favourite—between 10 and 20 feet from the ground, though both Wait and Phillips have taken some at 30 and 40 feet up.
This Drongo has a remarkably constant breeding season and, with the exception of two clutches, every egg of which I have a record has been laid in March and April. Two clutches, both very hard set, were taken by Jenkins on the 4th and 16th May. Phillips, who has taken or seen an immense number of this bird’s nests, as they bred freely round his Estate near Matugama, has records from the 7th March to the 20th April only.
The eggs number two or three in a full clutch, the one number as often as the other.
In colour the eggs go through all the variations which are found in the eggs of other Drongos, but I have never seen a pure white egg and, taking them as a series, they are decidedly richly marked, handsome eggs. Even the rare marbled type occurs in this species, as in some of the Grey Drongos.
Seventy-five eggs average 22.0 x 17.1 mm. : maxima 25.4 x 18.4 and 24.0 x 18.6 mm. ; minima 18.9 x 15.1 mm.
This is one of a clutch of three of which the biggest is 20.9 x 15.9 mm., but in another clutch of three, two eggs of which are unusually big, being about 23.0 x 18.0 mm., there is a pigmy measuring only 18.1 x 15.0 mm.

BookTitle: 
The Nidification Of Birds Of The Indian Empire
Reference: 
Baker, Edward Charles Stuart. The nidification of birds of the Indian Empire. Vol. 2. 1933.
Title in Book: 
778. Dicrurus ccerulescens leucopygialis
Spp Author: 
Blyth.
Book Author: 
Edward Charles Stuart Baker
CatNo: 
778
Year: 
1933
Page No: 
332
Common name: 
White Vented Drongo
M_ID: 
19599
M_SN: 
Dicrurus caerulescens leucopygialis
Volume: 
Vol. 2
id: 
13916

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