1374. Francolinus chinensis.
The Eastern or Chinese Francolin.
Tetrao chinensis, Osbeck, Voy. China, ii, p. 326 (1771). Tetrao perlatus, Gm. Syst. Nat. i, 2, p. 758 (1788). Francolinus perlatus, Steph. in Shaw's Gen. Zool. xi, p. 325; Anderson, Yunnan Exped., Aves, p. 672. Perdix phayrei, Blyth, J. A. S. B. xii, p. 1011 (1843). Francolinus sinensis, Blyth, Cat. p. 251; Wardl.-Bams. Ibis, 1877, p. 468. Francolinus phayrei, Blyth, J. A. S. B. xxiv, p. 480; Blyth & Wald. Birds Burm. p. 149. Francolinus chinensis, Hume, N. & E. p. 539; id. S. F. iii, p. 171; id. Cat. no. 819 bis; Hume & Dav. S. F. vi, p. 443; Hume & Marsh. Game B. ii, p. 27, pl.: Oates, B. B. ii, p. 323; id. in Hume's N. & E. 2nd ed. iii, p. 431; Ogilvie Grant, Ibis, 1892, p. 39; id. Cat. B. M. xxii, p. 136.
Coloration. Male. Middle of crown dark brown, the feathers pale-edged, a dull rufous or rufous-brown band on each side ; forehead and a band running back on each side above the eye black, a second black band from the gape beneath the ear-coverts ; between the two a white band from the lores beneath the eye and including the ear-coverts; neck all round, upper back, and wing-coverts black with white spots; scapulars and tertiaries black with buff spots, and broadly edged and tipped with dull chestnut; quills brown, with, on both webs, small buff or whitish spots that become bars on the outer webs of the secondaries; lower back and rump black, narrowly and closely barred with white; tail-coverts greyish brown, similarly barred ; tail-feathers black, with white bars on the basal two-thirds; chin and throat white; breast and abdomen with large white spots on a black ground, the spots increasing in size and becoming broad bars behind; under tail-coverts pale chestnut.
The female differs from the male in having the sides of the head buff, with broken brown superciliary and cheek stripes: the upper plumage brown, with little or no chestnut on the scapulars and tertiaries, the upper back and scapulars with ill-defined pale, spots and bars, and whitish shafts; the lower back, rump, and upper tail-coverts vermiculated with buff and with narrow sub-distant buff and broad dark brown cross-bands; chin and throat sullied white ; breast and abdomen buff, deeper posteriorly, barred with dark brown, the bars farther apart behind, middle of lower abdomen unbarred and passing into dull chestnut on the lower tail-coverts.
Bill dark blackish brown; irides light reddish hazel; eyelids pale greenish; legs orange (Oates). The male has large spurs.
Length 13; tail 3 ; wing 5.75: tarsus 1.7; bill from gape 1. The female is a little smaller.
Distribution. South China, Cochin China, Siam, and parts of Burma. This Partridge is common in parts of the Irrawaddy Valley, north of Prome, and was found in Karennee by Major Wardlaw-Bamsay. Specimens are in the British Museum labelled
Toungngoo and Thounggyen valley.
Habits, &c. Very similar to those of the last two species. This Francolin is found in forest-clearings, bamboo jungle, and waste land. The breeding-season in Burma is in June and July; the eggs, sometimes 8 in number, are pale buff, and are laid on the ground. They measure about 1.5 by 1.2.