1183. Glaucidium cuculoides.
The Large Barred Owlet.
Noctua cuculoides, Vigors, P. Z. 8. 1830, p. 8; Gould, Cent. pl. 4. Athene cuculoides, Blyth, Cat. p. 38 ; Horsf. & M. Cat. i, p. 66; Jerdon, B. I. i, p. 145 ; Stoliczka, J. A. S..B. xxxvii, pt. 2, p. 17; Hume, Rough Notes, p. 414 ; Godw.-Aust. J. A. S. B. xxxix, pt. 2. p. 94; xlvii, pt. 2, p. 22; Hume, N. & E. p. 71; id. S. F. iii, p. 39; v, p. 135 ; Inglis, S. F. v, p. 16: Wardl. Bams. His, 1877, p. 454; C. H. T. Marshall, Ibis, 1884, p. 408. Athene whiteleyi, Blyth, Ibis, 1807, p. 313; Blyth & Wald. Birds Burm. p. 66. Glaucidium cuculoides, Sharpe, Cat. B. M. ii, p. 219; Hume & Dav. S. F. vi, p. 37 ; Ball, S. F. vii, p. 201 ; Hume, Cat. no. 79; Scully, S. F. viii, p. 232; Oates, B. B. ii, p. 162; id. in Hume's N. & E. 2nd ed. iii, p. 113; Salvadori, Ann. Mus. Civ. Gen. (2) iv, p. 572; v, p. 558; Hume, S. F. xi, p. 23.
Burra dundul, H. (Chamba); Tangpum, Lepcha.
Coloration. Lores whitish with black tips; a narrow band over the eye white; sides of head, including ear-coverts, crown, and all the upper parts, olive-brown, sometimes rufous, with white, buffi, or rufous cross-bars ; some white patches on the outer scapulars and larger wing-coverts ; quills brown, with pale bars, becoming whitish spots on the inner and outer webs, and growing whitish throughout on the secondaries, which are tipped with the same colour; tail dark brown, with from 6 to 8 white bars, including the terminal one; the bars are generally interrupted and broken at the shafts; chin and moustachial stripe and the lower throat white; remainder of throat, breast, flanks, and legs dark olive-brown, with white or pale rufous bars; abdomen white, with rather irregular olive or rufous streaks.
Young birds are rufescent brown, with small buff spots on the head and nape; the back and breast not barred, the only bars being on the wings and tail.
Bill pale green; cere brown; irides bright yellow; legs greenish yellow (Oates).
Length about 9; tail 3.4; wing 5.8; tarsus 1; bill from gape .8.
Distribution. Throughout the Himalayas as far west as Hazara, chiefly at elevations from 2000 to 6000 feet, also in Assam, Cachar, Manipur, and throughout Burma as far south as Tavoy, being very common in Northern Tenasserim. This Owl is occasionally met with in Bengal, and has been recorded at Calcutta and in the Rajmehal hills, whilst Hume received a specimen from the southern portion of the Mirzapur district. G. whiteleyi, which appears to be only a large variety, is found throughout Southern China.
Habits, &c. This is one of the least nocturnal of all Owls, and may often be seen in full sunlight, sometimes even at midday, sitting on trees or stumps, or moving about and feeding in shady gardens or jungle. It keeps to thin tree- or bamboo-jungle or gardens, and feeds partly on insects, but also on small birds and mammals. The cry is a peculiar cackle, like a laugh, called by Hume a "chuckling vibrating call." The breeding-season is from March to May; the eggs, 4 in number, are deposited in a hollow or hole in a tree without any nest, or with a few dead leaves or touchwood as lining. The eggs are round, pure white and glossy, and measure about 1.41 by 1.19.