907. Neornis flavolivaceus intricatus

(907) Neornis flavolivaceus intricatus Hartert.
THE SHAN ABERRANT WARBLER.
Neornis flavolivaceus intricatus, Fauna B. I., Birds, 2nd ed. vol. ii, p. 503.
This race of Neornis is found, though very rarely, in the hills of Assam South of the Brahmapootra and thence to the Kachin Hills, where Harington found it breeding at about 5,000 to 6,000 feet. To the South it apparently extends to Thayetmyo, whence there is a single specimen in the British Museum collection.
Very little is known about the nidification or, indeed, the habits of this bird. It frequents scrub and bush cover at heights between 4,000 and 7,000 feet, while I thought I saw it more than once in dense Rhododendron and Oak forest at 6,000 feet in the Khasia Hills. The only birds we identified beyond doubt in that district were skulking about among Daphne-bushes in Pine forest, and it is such a confirmed skulker that one hears its curious shrill cry far more often than one sees the bird.
Harington had a nest and bird brought to him by a Kachin. The nest was made of coarse grass and bamboo-leaves, domed and lined thickly with feathers. Wickham also merely records that it breeds in the Kachin Hills in May and June.
Cook took one nest on the 26th May, of which he notes :—“Nest a round ball of grass, very thickly lined with feathers and wedged low down in a thick clump of coarse grass.” Elsewhere he describes the country round Sinlum, where he took his nest, as “mostly open country, interspersed with spinneys, small woods, and patches of cultivation.” Some of the hill-sides are covered with bracken, coarse grass, and low bushes, and it was among these last, apparently, he took the nest in question.
I took one nest of this bird myself which agreed exactly with those already described, measuring about 7 by 6 inches, made outwardly of bamboo-leaves and coarse grasses, loosely put together but still interlaced to some extent, and densely lined with soft feathers. The bird was trapped by a Khasia, but the eggs are all wrong, and I have no idea what they are, for I know of no Cuckoos which could have laid them. They are exactly like eggs of the Great Spider-Hunter but much smaller, in colour a dull olive-grey. The other eggs in my collection from Cook and Harington are just like the dark type of those of the preceding bird. The clutch of four taken by Harington has distinct rings or caps of still deeper, almost purple terra-cotta. They vary in size from 18.0 x 12.0 and 16.6 x 13.0 to 16.1 x 11.8 mm.
All the eggs recorded so far have been taken in May and June.

BookTitle: 
The Nidification Of Birds Of The Indian Empire
Reference: 
Baker, Edward Charles Stuart. The nidification of birds of the Indian Empire. Vol. 2. 1933.
Title in Book: 
907. Neornis flavolivaceus intricatus
Spp Author: 
Hartert
Book Author: 
Edward Charles Stuart Baker
CatNo: 
907
Year: 
1933
Page No: 
456
Common name: 
Shan Aberrant Warbler
M_ID: 
22802
M_SN: 
Horornis flavolivaceus intricatus
Volume: 
Vol. 2
id: 
14018

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Scratchpads developed and conceived by (alphabetical): Ed Baker, Katherine Bouton Alice Heaton Dimitris Koureas, Laurence Livermore, Dave Roberts, Simon Rycroft, Ben Scott, Vince Smith