1267. Microhierax eutolmus.
The Red-legged Falconet.
Ierax bengalensis (Brisson), apud Blyth, J. A. S. B. xii, p. 180* (1843). Hierax eutolmus v. bengalensis, Hodgson in Gray's Zool. Misc. p. 81 (1844), descr. nulla. Hierax eutolmus, Blyth, Cat. p. 17; id. J. A. S. B. xix, p. 324; Horsf. & M. Cat. i, p. 15 ; Jerdon, B. I. i, p. 42 ; Hume, Rough Notes, p. 111; Blanf Ibis, 1870, p. 464; Godw.-Aust. J. A. S. B. xliii, pt. 2, p. 152; Hume, S. F. xi, p. 6. Microhierax caerulescens (Linn.), Sharpe, Cat. B. M. i, p. 366; Hume Oates, S. F. iii, p. 22; Bingham, S. F. v, p. 80; ix, p. 142; Hume, S. F. v. p. 126; Hume & Dav. S. F. vi, p. 3; Hume, Cat. no. 20; Oates, B. B. ii, p. 211; id. in Hume's N. & E. 2nd ed. iii, p. 183; Salvad. Ann. Mus. Civ. Gen. (2) v, p. 556. Microhierax eutolmus, Gurney, Ibis, 1881, p. 272.
Ching-fin-nyel, Lepcha; Doun-oo-hnouk, Burmese.
Coloration. Forehead, broad supercilia extending back to the sides of the neck, cheeks, and broad nuchal collar white; crown, nape, and all the upper plumage, with the wings and tail, black with a metallic green gloss ; feathers round 'the orbit and a band running back from the eye and including the ear-coverts black ; quills black, with broad white spots on the inner webs ; all tail-feathers except the middle pair with white spots on the inner webs, and when freshly moulted narrow white tips confined to the inner webs; lower parts white, more or less tinged with ferruginous, always deeply ferruginous on the chin, throat, thighs, lower abdomen, and under tail-coverts; sides of the body black; wing-lining white.
Young birds have the black of the upper parts less glossy, the frontal band and supercilia chestnut, the chin and throat white, and the nuchal collar inconspicuous.
Bill slaty blue, nearly black at the tip ; cere dark brown, irides hazel-brown; eyelids plumbeous; legs plumbeous brown, claws black.
Length of female 7; tail 2.6; wing 4.25; tarsus .9; mid-toe without claw .72; bill from gape .55: of male, length 6.25; wing 3.8.
Distribution. The Himalayas below about 7000 feet elevation from Garhwal to Bhutan, and on the Garo hills, but not in the ranges around Upper Assam, where M. melanoleucus is found. The present form occurs throughout Burma, in Siam and Cambodia.
Habits, &c. Those of the genus. The eggs, four in number, were taken by Col. Bingham from a nest-hole in a tree on April 14th near Pahpoon, Tenasserim. They are white and measure 1.2 by .87. The only lining to the nest-hole was a pad of insects' wings mixed with rotten wood.
This Falconet is said to have been formerly trained to capture small birds.