304. Fulvetta vinipecta vinipecta

(304) Fulvetta vinipecta vinipecta (Hodgs.).
THE NEPAL WHITE-BROWED FULVETTA.
Fulvetta vinipecta vinipecta, Fauna, B. I., Birds, 2nd ed. vol. i, p 290.
This, again, is one of the Babblers breeding on the higher outer hills of the Himalayas, from some 7,000 to 10,000 feet, from Nepal Sikkim and the ranges North of the Brahmapootra to the East of Assam. It is very common in parts of Sikkim from 7,000 up to 11,500 feet (Sandakphu, Stevens). Stevens also observed it at 6,500 feet and (Sonada) 6,700 feet in May, so that it was probably breeding at that level.
As usual, even when descriptions of nests and eggs are ample, records of the type of country in which these are found are meagre and wanting, but in this case a certain amount of information on this point is available. Mandelli took his two nests “in dense brushwood” and Stevens also found them breeding in “scrub jungle.” Osmaston, who took numerous nests of this Babbler, writes :—“ Fulvetta is not a forest bird ; it is found in open low scrub, generally resulting from the destruction of forest by fire. I found them common and breeding on Singile La Ridge at about 11,000 feet above Darjiling in the low Ringal bamboo scrub which is grazed down to a height of about 18 inches to three feet high. The normal Ringal thickets are some ten to twelve feet high and are not frequented by Fulvetta. In the hills of Tehri Garhwal I found this bird breeding in low scrub but especially in dwarf willow. In Sikkim I took nests at heights ranging from 8,000 feet near Darjiling to 11,500 feet on the Singile La Ridge in Tehri Garhwal I took them between 9,400 and 10,500 feet.
“ The nests are deep compact cups made of grass and moss, sometimes nearly entirely of the latter, and generally mixed with roots. The lining is always of hair and the nest is placed in one of the little stunted clumps of ringal between 18 inches and three feet from the ground, built into one of the forks or fixed into two or three of the dwarf culms. They have been all built in the grazed-down scrub referred to above with one exception, which was placed in 3 or 4 dwarf culms in a dense thicket of bamboos. The nests are very like those of reed-warblers in appearance.”
The number of eggs laid seems to be always three and the usual breeding season is May and June. The eggs are a rather deep soft grey-blue in colour with a few blotches of black or, rarely, some freckles of reddish-brown at the larger end. Most eggs are immaculate elsewhere, but one or two have an odd spot or two or a blotch in the middle of the egg. The texture is very fine and close but glossless, and the shell is rather stout in proportion to the size of the egg. In appearance they are not in the least like one would expect to be laid by any Timaliine bird, and I know of no others at all resembling them.
Forty-nine eggs average 18.8 x 13.7 mm. : maxima 20.9 x 13.0 and 19.1 x 14.4 mm. ; minima 16.6 x 12.3 mm.

BookTitle: 
The Nidification Of Birds Of The Indian Empire
Reference: 
Baker, Edward Charles Stuart. The nidification of birds of the Indian Empire. Vol. 1. 1932.
Title in Book: 
304. Fulvetta vinipecta vinipecta
Spp Author: 
Hodgs.
Book Author: 
Edward Charles Stuart Baker
CatNo: 
304
Year: 
1932
Page No: 
266
Common name: 
Hodgsons Fulvetta
M_ID: 
25233
M_SN: 
Fulvetta vinipectus vinipectus
Volume: 
Vol. 1
id: 
13505

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