829. Motacilla personata.
The Mashed Wagtail.
Motacilla personata, Gould, Birds As. iv, pl. 63 (1861) ; Hume & Henders. Lah. to Yarh. p. 224; Scully, S. F. iv, p. 150; Hume, Cat no. 591; Biddulph, Ibis, 1881, p. 68; Scully, Ibis, 1881, p. 451; Sharpe, Cat. B. M. x, p. 479, pl. v, figs. 3, 4 ; Barnes, Birds Bom. p, 236; Oates in Hume's N. & E. 2nd ed. ii, p. 201. Motacilla dukhunensis, Sykes, apud Jerd. B. I. ii, p. 218. Motacilla cashmeriensis, Brooks, P. A. S. B. 1871, p. 210; id. J. A. S. B. xii, pt. ii, p. 82; xliii, pt. ii, p. 250; id. S. F. ii, p. 456.
The Black-faced Wagtail, Jerd.; Dhobin, Hind.
Coloration. In normal summer plumage, the forehead, anterior portion of crown, the upper part of the lores, round the eye, and a broad supercilium are white; remainder of the head, nape, hind neck, the neck all round, and the lower plumage from the chin to the upper breast black; rest of lower plumage white; upper plumage grey turning to black on the upper tail-coverts; lesser wing-coverts grey ; median and greater coverts entirely white in the closed wing; quills dark brown, the inner webs largely white and the outer margined with white; the later secondaries with the outer webs almost entirely white; the two outer pairs of tail-feathers white, the others black.
In winter plumage, the chin and throat become white, but a black moustachial streak remains dividing the white of the throat from the white round the eye ; the ear-coverts are always black ; the feathers of the lower throat have their bases white.
The young have the whole upper plumage dull grey, and throat and breast dull brownish; the wings and tail are from the first very similar to the same parts in the adult. The black plumage of the head and neck is assumed very slowly and probably not completely till the second spring.
Iris blackish brown; legs, feet, and bill black (Butler).
Length about 8; tail 3.6; wing 3.6; tarsus .9; bill from gape .65.
Distribution. A winter visitor to the whole of India proper down to Belgaum on the south and to Calcutta on the east. This species is a constant resident in Gilgit and probably other parts of Kashmir. It extends west to Afghanistan and Persia and north to Turkestan and Central Asia.
Habits, &c. Breeds in Afghanistan in May and June, constructing its nest near water under large stones and in similar localities. The eggs have not, however, been described.