Genus MILVUS

The true Kites belong to the present genus, and are all birds of moderate size, with a long forked tail. The bill is rather weak,, the culmen straight at the base, then curved, the festoon generally small, the cere well developed, and the nostril oval and oblique. Wings long and pointed, but not extending quite to the end of the tail; 3rd and 4th quills longest. Tarsus short, feathered for about half its length, the naked lower portion with broad shields in front, reticulated behind and at the sides; toes short, scutellate above, lateral toes uneven claws moderate, middle claw dilated on the inside.

Five or six species are known, inhabiting Europe, Africa, Asia,, and Australia : one of these is amongst the commonest of Indian birds, a second has a wide range in India, but is rare, whilst the third just comes within the empire to the westward.

Key to the Species.

a. Head tawny or rufous with black streaks in adults.
a1. Wing 16.75 to 18.5 inches; 17 to 19.5………………………M. govinda, p. 374.
b1. Wing 19-20.5; 19.25-21.5………………………M. melanotis, p. 377.
b. Head whitish with black streaks in adults………………………M. migrans, p. 378.

BookTitle: 
The Fauna Of British India including Ceylon and Burma
Reference: 
Blanford, William Thomas, ed. The Fauna of British India: Including Ceylon and Burma. Vol.3 1895.
Title in Book: 
Genus MILVUS
Book Author: 
William Thomas Blanford
Year: 
1895
Page No: 
373
M_ID: 
3038
M_SN: 
Milvus
Volume: 
Vol. 3
Term name: 
id: 
1730

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