(1929) Lophophorus sclateri.
Lophophorus sclateri Jerdon, Ibis, 1870, p. 148 (Mishmi Hills); Blanf. & Oates, iv, p. 98.
Vernacular names. Dong (Tibetan, Po Ba dialect); Pui-de (Bhutea) ; Tratta, Poa-padoi (Mishmi).
Description.— Adult male. A tuft of feathers below the nostril and a narrow line from the upper corner of the nostril to the crown black; crest of short curly metallic feathers blue-green; ear-coverts and narrow line behind the crest black with blue-green reflections; whole mantle deep purple blue-green, more purple on the shoulders ; lower back, rump and upper tail-coverts-white with a few black shaft-stripes and, in one specimen, metallic white spots at the tips; tail mottled black, rufous and white on the basal half, the central portion a rich rufous with a terminal white band; lesser and median wing-coverts bronze-green shot with copper ; greater coverts and inner secondaries deep metallic blue-green ; primaries and outer secondaries velvety blue-black ; lower plumage velvety black.
Colours of soft parts. "Iris dark brown; bill dirty white; legs pale greenish; bare orbital space blue" (F. M, Bailey). "Iris dark purplish-blue ; naked skin peacock-green" (Forrest).
Measurements. Wing 292 to 325 mm.; tail 194. to 206 mm.; tarsus 78 to 82 mm.; culmen about 50 mm.; short blunt spur 12 to 18 mm. " Weight 5 lb." (Bailey).
Female. Upper part of head and whole neck vandyke-brown with a buff: Y-shaped mark on each feather; lores white, mottled with fulvous and brown; sides of head paler than the crown; back, scapulars, adjoining wing-coverts and innermost secondaries rich chocolate-brown with buff central streaks widening into ill-defined rufescent bars; lower back, rump and tail-coverts dull earthy-white, rufescent next the back, more white on the longest tail-coverts, irregularly barred with narrow wavy lines of brown, boldest and darkest on the longest tail-coverts; tail black, broadly tipped with white and with six or seven narrow bars of white, the central feathers mottled with rufous on their terminal halves and all with a more or less mottled edge of brown-buff; primaries and secondaries umber-brown, the latter mottled on the margins with buff and brown; remainder of visible wing black with numerous bars of rich chestnut-rufous and very fine buff shaft-streaks ; chin and throat white; remainder of lower plumage dull brown densely covered with tiny wavy bars of dull ochre.
Colours of soft parts. Iris brown; bill pale yellow or horny-green ; legs dull pale greenish lead-colour.
Measurements. Wing 279 mm.; tail 193 mm.; tarsus 71 mm.; culmen 48 mm.; short crest about 18 mm.
Distribution. Hills North of the Assam Valley from the Eastern Dafla Hills, thence North into South-East Tibet and East into Yunnan, where Beebe obtained one and Forrest eight specimens.
Nidification. Nothing recorded. A clutch of five eggs brought to me by some Abor Headmen together with some skins, one of which, a hen, had been trapped on the eggs, are like those of L. impejanus but exceptionally handsomely marked. They average 63.2 x 45.4 mm. They were given to me on the 7th June and were taken between the 1st and 3rd of that month at an elevation of about 9,000 feet on a peak North of Sadiya.
Habits. Very little is known about this Monal. Forrest found it up to 11,000 and 12,000 feet in forest in Yunnan and Chatterton came across a flock at a little over 9,000 feet just above Sadiya and close to where my eggs were taken. These latter birds also were in dense forest, the ground very steep and broken and the trees all oaks and rhododendrons, amongst which the birds moved about very warily and defied any close approach. There were also great stretches of magnificent pines, not apparently ever frequented by the Monal, though there were plentiful signs of where they had dug for roots in the open grass hill-tops, just outside the oak-forests. The call is a loud whistling note apparently very similar to that of the Impeyan Pheasant and Bailey says that they are very noisy in the evenings.