210. Lioptila pulchella.
The Beautiful Sibia.
Sibia pulchella, Godwin-Austen, A. M. N. H. (4) xiii, p. 160 (1874) ; id. J. A. S. B. xliii, pt. ii, p. 164, pi. vii; xlv, pt. ii, p. 78 ; Hume, S. F. iii, p. 281. Malarias pulchellus (Godw.-Aust.), Hume, Cat.no. 429 ter; Sharpe, Cat. B. M. vii, p. 407 ; Hume, S. F. xi, p. 173.
Coloration. The whole upper plumage bluish grey, brighter on the head; median tail-feathers umber-brown, with a subterminal black band and a dark grey tip ; the others with a progressively diminishing amount of umber-brown and an increasing quantity of black till the outermost feathers are wholly black with a grey tip; smaller wing-coverts bluish grey; greater coverts next the body entirely chocolate-brown, this colour diminishing in extent on the outer coverts and giving place to black ; winglet and primary-coverts black; edge of wing bluish grey; tertiaries umber-brown, edged with black on the outer webs ; secondaries black, broadly edged externally with dark bluish grey ; primaries black, with the outer webs almost entirely pale bluish grey; lores and round the eye black; ear-coverts bluish grey mottled with black ; the sides of the neck and the entire lower plumage ashy blue tinged with vinous.
Bill black ; legs horny-brown (Godwin-Austen).
Length about 9.5; tail 4.9 ; wing 4.1; tarsus 1.3; bill from gape 1.1.
Distribution. The Peak of Khunho, Eastern Burrail range, Naga hills, at about 8000 feet; the slopes of Toruputu Peak, Daphla hills, at about 5000 feet.
Habits, &c. Godwin-Austen, the discoverer of this species, says that it is found in companies of about half a dozen haunting the tops of the rhododendron trees, the flowers of which it searches busily for insects.