770. Acanthis brevirostris.
The Eastern Twite.
Linota brevirostris, Gould, Bonap. Comp. List B. Eur. & N. Am. p. 34 (1838) ; Horsf. & M. Cat. ii, p. 496; Stoliczka, J. A. S. B. xxxvii, pt. ii, p. 62; Hume & Henders. Lah, to Yark. p. 260, pl. 26 ; Scully, S. F. iv, p. 170. Linaria brevirostris (Gould), Hume, S. F. vii, p. 417; id. Cat. no. 751 bis; Biddulph, Ibis, 1881, p. 86, 1882, p. 284; Scully, Ibis, 1881, p. 578. Acanthis brevirostris (Gould), Sharpe, Cat. B. M. xii, p. 238; Oates in Hume's N. & E. 2nd ed. ii, p. 155.
Coloration. Male. Forehead, crown, nape, hind neck, back, and scapulars pale sandy brown, each feather with a dark brown streak down the middle; rump rosy pink ; upper tail-coverts dark brown with broad whitish edges ; tail-feathers blackish, edged with white on both webs; wing-coverts dark brown, suffused with rufous towards the edges and tipped with sandy white ; primaries and secondaries blackish, the fourth to the eighth primaries broadly edged with white, the others more narrowly with sandy white ; tertiaries brown, broadly edged with fulvous ; sides of head, chin, and throat sandy brown ; breast and sides of the body sandy brown, streaked with dark brown; abdomen, under tail-coverts, under wing-coverts, and axillaries white.
Female. Differs from the male in having the rump of the same colour as the back.
In the summer the upper plumage is somewhat darker and the rump brighter pink than in the winter.
The young bird appears to resemble the adult female, but to be more fulvous.
Bill yellowish horny, brown on the culmen ; legs and feet brown, claws dusky or black with yellowish tips ; iris brown (Scully).
Length about 5.5; tail 2.0; wing 3.1; tarsus .6; bill from gape .4.
Distribution. Occurs in Gilgit apparently throughout the year from 5000 feet upwards, according to season. Stoliczka observes that this species is " rare in Ladak and visiting Kulu and the Sutlej valley in winter; it is also in winter caught near Chini, and sometimes caged." No one has since confirmed this account of this Linnet's distribution in the Himalayas. This species extends westwards to Asia Minor, and is found throughout a considerable portion of Central Asia.
Habits, &c. An egg of this species, said to have been found in Native Sikhim, is described as being white with a faint bluish tinge and mottled all over with reddish brown, and to have measured .72 by .55.