(508) Aenanthe opistholeuca.
Saxicola opistholeuca Strickland, Jardine's Con. Orn. p. 60 (18-19) (Northern India, Punjab) ; Blanf. & Oates, ii, p. 73.
Vernacular names. None recorded.
Description.— Male. Rump, upper and lower tail-coverts white; central tail-feathers white at the base, black on the terminal four-fifths; lateral tail-feathers white with broad brownish-black tips; wing-quills dark brown; remainder of plumage black, but not very glossy.
Colours of soft parts. Iris brown ; bill, legs and feet black.
Measurements. Total length about 165 mm.; wing 90 to 95 mm.; tail 62 to 65mm.; tarsus 25 mm.; culmen 14 mm.
Female. Above, the black of the male is replaced by light brown. The ear-coverts are bright hair-brown ; the chin, throat and breast are brownish, often with a buff tinge, changing to albescent on the abdomen.
In the British Museum collection are many birds sexed female which differ from the adult female in being very dark brown above; they are all probably young males.
Distribution. Breeding in Turkestan, Afghanistan, Pakistan, probably Gilgit, and, certainly, all along the North-TVest Frontier of India as far South as Thull. In winter it migrates to the lower hills and plains as far South as Sind, in Bombay to Khandesh and to Nagpur and the whole of the North-West Province.
Nidification. Fulton found this the most common of all the Chats in Chitral, breeding between 6,000 and 10,000 feet and both Rattray and Kinchin took nests at Parachinar,Kurram Valley, at about 4,500 feet. These they describe as grass cups lined with a few feathers, grass and hair, and placed well inside holes in rocks.
The eggs, now in my collection, are like those of the two preceding Chats in shape, texture, size and colour.
Habits. Quite similar to those of other Wheatears and Chats, which keep to stony wastes and deserts.