1314. Macropygia ruficeps

1314. Macropygia ruficeps.

The Little Malay Cuckoo-Dove.

Columba ruficeps, Temm. Pl. Col. pl. 561 (1835). Macropygia amboinensis, apud Blyth, Cat. p. 234, nec Linn. Macropygia ruficeps, Stoliczka, J. A. S. B. xxxix, pt. 2, p. 331 ; Blyth, Birds Burm. p. 146; Wardi. Bams. Ibis, 1890, p. 225; Salvadori, Cat. B. M. xxi, p. 360. Macropygia assimilis, Hume, S. F. ii, p. 441 (1874) ; Walden in Blyth's Birds Barm. p. 146; Wardi. Rums. Ibis, 1877, p. 468; Hume & Dav. S. F. vi, p. 420; Hume, Cat. no. 791 ter; Oates, B. B. ii, p. 296 ; Salvadori, Ann. Mus. Civ. Gen. (2) v, p. 618.

Coloration. Male. Head pale cinnamon, growing darker on the nape and sides of neck and passing into the dull purplish brown, richly glossed with metallic-green changing to lilac, of the lower neck and upper back ; rest of upper parts, wings, and tail brown, wing-coverts edged with ferruginous red; rump and upper tail-coverts rusty brown, middle four rectrices the same, outer rectrices bright rufous with a broad, rather irregular black band near the end ; lower surface of body light cinnamon, whitish on the chin and throat, and with broad white tips to some of the pectoral feathers ; wing-lining and inner edges of quills towards the base ferruginous red.

Females are smaller and duller above, there is no metallic gloss on the upper back; lower parts browner than in the male ; feathers of fore neck and breast black with rufous tips, appearing as if spotted with black.

Young birds resemble females, but have dark edges to the feathers of the crown and pale edges on the upper back.

Bill pale brown ; iris pearly white (purplish or brown in the young), orbital skin pale blue; legs and feet brownish pink or red.

Length of males about 13; tail 6.75; wing 6: tarsus .75; bill from gape .9 : of females the tail is about 6; wing 5.5. Javan specimens are smaller than Burmese, but do not differ in any other way.

Distribution. The higher hill-forests of Southern Burma, the Karen Hills near Toungoo, Kollidoo, and Mooleyit, east of Moulmein; also the Malay Peninsula, Sumatra, Java, and Borneo.

Habits. This is described by Davison as a shy bird, keeping to dense forest in small parties of five or six, and having a peculiar quadrisyllable call repeated several times.

The Fauna Of British India, Including Ceylon And Burma-birds
Blanford, William Thomas, ed. The Fauna of British India: Including Ceylon and Burma. Vol. 4. 1898.
Title in Book: 
1314. Macropygia ruficeps
Book Author: 
William Thomas Blanford
Page No: 
Common name: 
Little Malay Cuckoo Dove
Little Cuckoo-Dove
Macropygia ruficeps
Vol. 4

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