2214. Ibis leucocephalus leucocephalus

(2214) Ibis leucocephalus leucocephalus.

The Painted Stork.

Tantalus leucocephalus Pennant, Ind. Zool., p. 11 (1769) (Ceylon). Pseudotantalus leucocephalus. Blanf. & Oates, iv, p. 376.

Vernacular names. Janghil, Dokh (Hind.); Kat-Sarunga, Ram-jhankar, Sona-janga (Beng.); Lungduk (Sind) ; Yerri Kali-konga (Tel.) ; Singa Nareh (Tarn.); Changa vella nary (Tam., Ceylon); Datuduwa (Cing.) ; Hnet-7cya (Burm.).

Description. Primaries, outer secondaries and tail black, glossed with green; lesser and median wing-coverts black with broad white edges; scapulars, greater wing-coverts and innermost secondaries rosy-white, the last with pure white edges and deeper pink than the rest; under wing-coverts and a band across the lower breast black, glossed with green and with white edges to most of the feathers; rest of plumage white.

Colours of soft parts. Iris straw-yellow, brown in the young; bill orange-yellow, darker and plumbeous at the base; naked skin of the face orange-yellow; legs and feet brown or fleshy-brown, sometimes nearly red.

Measurements. Wing 490 to 510 mm.; tail 150 to 172 mm.; tarsus 240 to 250 mm.; culmen 252 to 278 mm.

Young birds have the feathers of the neck and back very scalelike, pale brown in colour and with dark edges to those of the neck; lesser and median coverts brown ; the greater coverts paler brown ; no pectoral band.

Distribution. Ceylon, India, Burma, Indo-China and South-West China. It is common in Sind but is rare in the Punjab, though Whistler obtained it in the Jheluni District in April. June and July and again in the J hang District in June.

Nidification. The Painted Stork breeds from September to January in large colonies and nearly always in company with numerous other Storks, Herons, Cormorants etc., these, however, generally being rather earlier in starting. The nests are flimsy and ill-made and many are built in the same tree quite close together ; there is little or no lining, the eggs being deposited on the twigs of which the body of the nest is composed. Three to five or, rarely, six eggs are laid, which are quite typical of the family. Fifty eggs average 65.9 X45.0 mm.: maxima 80.2 x 51.6 mm.; minima 65.3 x 46.0 and 65.4 x 43.2 mm.

Habits. The Painted Stork is a very familiar Indian bird, common everywhere where there are marshes, lakes or ponds. It is more exclusively a fish-eater than most Storks and the major part of its diet consists of fish, eels and frogs caught in the water, though it will eat insects, crabs and various other kinds of Stork-food when pressed. It seems to have no note beyond the usual snapping of the mandibles and it soars flies, dances etc. much like all other members of its family.

The Fauna Of British India, Including Ceylon And Burma-birds(second Edition)
Baker, EC S (1922–1930) The fauna of British India, including Ceylon and Burma. Second edition. vol.6 1929.
Title in Book: 
2214. Ibis leucocephalus leucocephalus
Book Author: 
Edward Charles Stuart Baker
Page No: 
Common name: 
Painted Stork
Painted Stork
Mycteria leucocephala
Vol. 6

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