28. Nucifraga multipunctata.
The Larger Spotted Nutcracker.
Nucifraga multipunctata, Gould, P. Z. S. 1849, p. 23 ; Hume Henders. Lah. to Yark. p. 239; Sharpe, Cat. B. 31. iii, p. 55; Hume, Cat. no. 667; Biddulph, Ibis, 1881, p. 78; Scully, Ibis, 1881, p. 572. Nucifraga multimaculata, Gould, laps, cal., Jerd. B. I. ii, p. 304; Stoliczka, J. A. S. B. xxxvii, pt. ii, p. 54.
Coloration. Forehead, crown, nape, and hind neck dark chocolate-brown ; naral bristles mottled black and white; with these exceptions the whole plumage of the head and body is dark chocolate- brown or blackish, each feather with a large and Lengthened drop of white occupying the greater portion of it, and causing the lower plumage to look almost white; wings glossy black; the lesser coverts with large white spots, the median with triangular white marks, the greater and primary-coverts with the primaries slightly tipped with white; the secondaries and tertiaries with oval white drops near the tip; tail black, broadly tipped white on the outer feathers, less so on the centrals; under tail-coverts pure white.
The young have the head and hind neck pale brown; the head becomes dark almost as soon as the nestling is fully fledged. Bill homy brown ; legs black (Jerdon).
Length about 15; tail 6.5; wing 8; tarsus 1.6; bill from gape 1.9.
Distribution. Kashmir and the Himalayas to Kumaon. Stoliczka found this species tolerably common in the pine- and cedar-forests near Kistwar and Budrawar. Biddulph remarks that it is common at all times in Gilgit above 8000 feet, and there are specimens in the British Museum from various localities from Murree to Kumaon.