(693) Hypothymis azurea styani.
The Northern Indian Black-naped Flycatcher.
Siphia styani Hartl., Abh. Nat. Ver. Bremen, xvi, 2, p. 248 (1898) (Horkow, Hainan). Hypothymis azurea. Blanf. & Oates, ii, p. 49.
Vernacular names. Kola Kat-katia (Beng.).
Description.— Adult male. Differs from H. a. sykesi in having the crown a still brighter blue and the blue of the upper parts deeper and richer. The blue of the breast below the black bar is also rather richer and often further produced on to the lower breast and flanks.
Colours of soft parts and Measurements as in H. a. sykesi. Wing 68 to 73 mm.
Distribution. All India north of the preceding bird; Assam, all Burma, Siam, Cochin China, Yunnan and Shan States, Annam, Hainan.
Nidification. Similar to that of the Southern Black-naped Flycatcher but it is exceptionally fond of bamboos in which it builds its nest. It lays three or four eggs, which cannot be distinguished from any of those of the other races of Hypothymis. Fifty eggs average 17.1 x 13.1 mm.: maxima 18.0 x 14.1 mm.; minima 15.9 X l2.l mm.
The breeding-season is April, May and June.
Habits. This is an extremely common Flycatcher throughout , the lower hills of Assam and Burma as veil as in the plains in their vicinity. It may be found in almost any kind of well-wooded country and I have seen it, though not commonly, in the interior of the densest evergreen forest and in quite open cultivated districts. Undoubtedly, however, its favourite resorts are thin scrub and the secondary growth which springs up in deserted cultivation or bamboo-jungle. If these have running water near by, so much the better.
The voice of this Flycatcher is very harsh, but it is on the whole a silent bird and seldom indulges in its call. They are found almost invariably in pairs and never in flocks, though, where they are particularly common, two pairs may be seen hawking insects from the same tree.