1096. Lyncornis cerviniceps.
The Great Eared Nightjar.
Lyncornis cerviniceps, Gould, Icon. Av. pt. ii, pl. 14 (1838); Blyth, J. A. S. B. xiv, p. 209; Jerdon, Ibis, 1871, p. 356; Blyth & Wald. Birds Burm. p. 82 ; Hume, S. F. ii, pp. 162, 469; xi, p. 40 ; id. Cat. no. 114 bis ; Hume & Inylis, S. F. v, p. 17; Davison, ibid. p. 454; Wardi. Ramsay, Ibis, 1877, p. 459; Hume &; Dav. S. F. vi, p. 60 ; Bingham, S. F. ix, p. 151; Oates, B. B. ii, p. 22 ; id. in Hume's N. & E. 2nd ed. iii, p. 52 ; Hartert, Cat. B. M. xvi, p. 604. Eurostopodus cerviniceps, Blyth, Cat. p. 82. Lyncornis bourdilloni, Hume, S. F. iii, p. 302; id. Cat. no. 114 ter; Hume & Bourd. S. F. iv, p. 382.
Twun-dweng-ngat,Arakan; Din-koo-nah, Assam.
Coloration. General colour above rich brown, the surface beautifully mottled; crown and nape buff, finely vermiculated with black, and with a few black oval spots in the middle; sides of head and chin black, the feathers with rufous edges; ear-tufts black, tipped the colour of the crown; back and rump buff, mixed with black and chestnut; scapulars buff and black mixed down the middle, with a band of black and chestnut in larger blotches on each side; wing-coverts black and chestnut mixed; quills black, with broken bands of rufous and black above, buff and black below; tail with alternating bars of buff and grey, each mottled with black ; a large white spot on the throat; fore-neck, like chin, breast, and abdomen, buff, with black bars.
Bill light horn-colour; iris dark brown ; legs and feet brownish fleshy.
Length about 16 ; tail 8 ; wing 12 ; tarsus 0.75.
Distribution. Throughout Burma in evergreen forests near hills, extending south into the northern part of the Malay Peninsula, and north to Manipur, Upper Assam, and Cachar, where this bird is common in August and September only. A specimen is said by Jerdon to have been obtained in the Teesta Valley, Sikhim, and a large Nightjar, probably this species, has been noticed in the Andaman Islands. The only other locality is the Travancore hills, where specimens were shot by Mr. Bourdillon. The first obtained was regarded by Mr. Hume as distinct on account of its small size, but other skins show that there is no constant difference of importance.
Habits, &c. Very similar to those of Caprimulgus, except that L. cerviniceps has been found by Major Bingham roosting in caves in the daytime. Hume had suggested the probability of this being the case. This bird appears soon after sundown, according to Blyth and Davison, flying at a considerable height at first, then nearer the ground, and capturing the insects on which it feeds. The note is a characteristic full clear trisyllabic whistle, uttered on the wing or from a perch. A single egg, found by Davison on January 10th, was a long cylindrical oval, cream-coloured, with irregular blotches of pale lilac-grey, looking as if they were beneath the surface (a common character of Caprimulgine eggs). It measured 1.65 by 1.18. It was laid on the ground in a slight depression, without any nest.