Gallus Brisson, Orn., i, p. 166 (1760).

Type, Phasianus gallus Linn.

The genus Gallus contains the true Jungle-fowl, of which there are four species confined to the Indo-Malayan region, and of these three occur within our area.

The males are all furnished with a fleshy crest or comb and with two wattles or lappets hanging from each side of the throat, as in our Indian forms, or with a single one as in the species varius. The tail consists of fourteen feathers in all our species, of sixteen in varius. The central tail-feathers are greatly lengthened with pliant shafts, so that they droop in a graceful curve ; the whole tail is sharply compressed ; the feathers of, the neck and rump are long and lanceolate; the wings are rounded, the first primary shorter than the tenth, the fifth the longest; the legs are long and powerful, the tarsus being longer than the middle toe and claw combined and, in the males, furnished with a long sharp spur.

Key to Species.

A.Comb and spurs highly developed,
a. Neck-hackles red, or golden-red with no spots.
a1. Breast black............... G. bankiva, p. 295.
b1. Breast reddish-orange............... G. lafayettii, p. 300.
B.Neck-hackles blackish with golden bars
or spots............... G. sonneratii, p. 298.
B.Comb and spurs rudimentary.
c. Breast rufous-brown with pale shaft-lines.................G. bankiva, p. 295.
d.Breast mottled brown arid black and white..............G. lafayettii, p. 300.
e. Breast white, each feather edged with brown ...............G. sonneratii, p. 298.

The names which the Red Jungle-fowl should bear have been much discussed recently but I follow Rothschild (Nov. Zool. xxxiii, p. 206, 1926) in discarding the name ferrugineas for any of the races, as it was founded on a bird, described by Sonnerat, which could not under any circumstances have been a Jungle-fowl. On the other hand, Linnaeus's name G. gallus was applied to the domestic fowl and this was again divided by him into several varieties, of which pusillus, if any, is apparently applicable to the Indian Game-cock, Gallus pugnax. Admittedly pugnax is here used merely as an adjective and cannot be used as a name, either binomial or trinomial. Nor, however, can gallus be used, because, first, it is applied to domestic fowls of ALL kinds and, secondly, because if we use it at all, on the present system, we must use it for the first-described bird, which has no relation whatsoever to any known wild form of Gallus. The types of domestic fowls Linnaeus divides up as B, y, S etc. and the first name undoubtedly is a, although this letter is omitted, and it is the only one to which Gallus can be applied. The final description beginning " Gallus pugnax" certainly refers to a Game-cock and this he calls pusillus. I consider it quite impossible to use gallus as a specific name for any wild form of this genus. We must accordingly use bankiva Temm., 1813, the next oldest name which becomes available. Ferrugineus being inapplicable, the name robinsoni of Rothschild (in loc. cit.) must be employed, leaving Kloss's murghi for the Indian race.

The Fauna Of British India, Including Ceylon And Burma-birds(second Edition)
Baker, EC S (1922–1930) The fauna of British India, including Ceylon and Burma. Second edition. vol.5 1928.
Title in Book: 
Book Author: 
Edward Charles Stuart Baker
Page No: 
Vol. 5
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