1351. Galloperdix bicalcarata.
The Ceylon Spur-fowl.
Perdix bicalcaratus, Penn. Ind. Zool. p. 40, pl. vii (1769). Perdix zeylonensis, Gmel. Syst. Nat. i, pt. 2, p. 759 (1788). Galloperdix zeylonensis, Blyth, Cat. p. 241; Hume, N. & E. p. 535. Galloperdix bicalcarata, Layard, A. M. N. H. (2) xiv, p. 105; Blyth, Ibis, 1867, p. 308; Holdsworth, P. Z. S. 1872, p. 469; Hume, S. F. vii, pis. 430, 453; id. Cat. no. 815 bis; Hume & Marsh. Game B. i, p. 261, pl. ; Legge, Birds Ceyl. p, 741, pl. xxxiii; Oates in Hume's N. & E. 2nd ed. iii, p. 426; Ogilvie Grant, Cat. B. M. xxii, p. 264.
Haban-Kvkula, Saban-Kukula, Cing.
Coloration. Male. Forehead, crown, nape, hind neck and sides of neck, upper back, sides of breast and flanks black with white shaft-stripes, narrow on the head, broad on the flanks ; interscapulars, scapulars, and wing-coverts the same, but with the sides of the feathers chestnut, vermiculated with black, and the white shaft-stripes represented on the wing-coverts by subterminal pear-shaped spots ; lower back and rump chestnut, finely vermiculated with black ; quills dark brown, secondaries mottled with chestnut on outer webs ; tertiaries throughout, upper tail-coverts, and tail black ; sides of head and throat white, feathers edged with black, chin pure white ; lower parts to mid-abdomen white ; feathers of fore neck and sometimes of breast with black edges, broader towards the sides of the breast; lower abdomen and lower tail-coverts blackish brown; with white or buff terminal spots.
Female. Crown blackish brown, forehead and sides of head brown with pale centres to the feathers, chin whitish ; body above and below and outer surface of wings dull chestnut, vermiculated with black except on the breast; quills and tail as in the male : upper tail-coverts like rump but darker.
Bill, legs, feet, and naked skin round eyes red; irides brownish yellow or brownish red (Legge).
Length of male about 13.5 ; tail 4.5 ; wing 6.5 ; tarsus 2.1 ; bill from gape 1. Females are smaller : wing 6.
Distribution. Peculiar to Ceylon, and not found in the dry northern portion of the island.
Habits, &c. Very similar to those of the last two species. This also is a shy bird, rarely seen outside the forest except in the early morning, and generally making its presence known early and late by its cackling call. It breeds, according to Legge, from April to August, and lays usually about four cream-coloured eggs, measuring on an average 1.5 by 1.14.