(1924) Gennaeus lineatus oatesi.
OATES'S SILVER PHEASANT
Gennaeus oatesi Ogilvie-Grant, Cat. B. M., xxii,p. 306 (1893) (Prome).
Vernacular names. Yit (Burma) ; Rak (Arrakan).
Description.— Adult male. Similar to G. l. lineatus but more boldly marked with better-defined vermiculations; the larger and more conspicuous barring of the rump, as in the horsfieldii group, is visible but; very inconspicuous, often obsolete ; the markings are in the shape of bars across the feather and not following its contour as in the nycthemerus group.
Colours of soft parts as in G. l. lineatus.
Measurements. Wing 283 to 294 mm.; tail 275 to 300 mm.
Female differs from that of horsfieldii in having the whole tail chestnut-brown or chestnut-rufous barred irregularly both above and below with brown ; the general tone of the plumage is redder and the streak on the upper surface obsolete or ill-defined; the flanks and sides of the breast are marked with streaks as in the Burmese Silver Pheasant but these are buff not white.
Measurements. Wing about 205 mm.; tail about 210 mm.
Distribution. Arrakan Yomas from about 20°.5 lat. on the North to the extreme South. Its Eastern boundary seems to be the Irrawaddy River.
Nidification much the same as that of G. l. lineatus but very little is known about it. Most eggs seem to be laid between the 20th March and 10th May, the nesting-sites selected being invariably either in rather thick bamboo-jungle or in the dense secondary growth which comes up in deserted cultivation. The eggs are inseparable from those of the other races and ten of them average 47.0 x 37.1 mm. Fielden found young birds just hatched in August.
Habits. This Pheasant is found from the level of the plains up to some 3,000 feet but is not a bird of high latitudes. It haunts bamboo-jungle, scrub- or grass-covered hill-sides which are steep and broken, so that even where common it is not easy to make a bag.