737. Perieroeotus flammeus flammeus

(737) Pericrocotus flammeus flammeus (Forst.).
Pericrocotus speciosus flammeus, Fauna B. I., Birds, 2nd ed. vol. ii, p. 322.
Pericrocotus flammeus flammeus, ibid. vol. viii, p. 636.
The Orange Minivet is distributed throughout South-West India from Khandalla to Cape Cormorin, breeding in the hills of Mysore, the Nilgiris, Palnis etc. and in those of Travancore and in Ceylon.
As regards South India, the only suggestion as to the kind of country it breeds in is Darling’s remark that he found a nest at about 6,000 feet at Neddivattum on the 5th September, on a tall tree near the edge of jungle.
Miss Cockburn took several nests and eggs of this Minivet in the Nilgiris in June and July which she sent to Hume, who thus describes them :—
“The nests are comparatively massive little cups, placed on, or sometimes in, the forks of slender boughs. They are usually composed of excessively fine twigs, the size of fir-needles, and they are densely plastered over the whole of the exterior surface with greenish-grey lichen, so closely and cleverly put together that the side of the nest looks exactly like a piece of lichen-covered branch. There appears to be no lining, and the eggs are laid on the fine little twigs which compose the body of the nest.
“The nests are externally from 3 to 3.1/4 inches in diameter, and about 1.1/2 inch deep, with an egg-cavity about 2 inches in diameter and about 3/4 inch in depth. Some, however, when placed in a fork are much deeper and narrower, say externally about inches in diameter and the same in height ; the egg-cavity about 1.3/4 inch in diameter and 1.1/2 inch in depth.
“Miss Cockburn says that one nest was found on the 24th June on a high tree, the nest being placed in a thin branch between 30 and 40 feet from the ground. It contained a single fresh egg, which was broken in the fall of the branch, which had to be cut. This egg, the remains of which were sent me, had a pale greenish ground, and was pretty thickly streaked and spotted, most thickly so at the large end, with pale yellowish-brown and pale rather dingy-purple, the latter colour predominating.”
Another egg sent by Miss Cockburn is described as having a pale sea-green or greenish-white ground rather sparsely speckled and spotted with pale yellowish-brown.
This egg measured 0.9 by 0.67 inch, and another sent by J. Darling measured 0.88 by 0.68 inch ; the second was in colour like that of Miss Cockburn’s, but rather more thickly spotted.
Mr. T. E. Tunnard took two nests in Ceylon at about 5,600 feet, built in trees growing in a Tea Estate near forest. Of these two, one was placed “on the top of a horizontal branch in a fork made by an upright twig, about 50 feet from the ground. By a lucky chance I was able to spot the bird on the nest with my glasses. In the afternoon a coolie went up the tree and successfully brought me down the nest and the two eggs it contained. The nest was composed almost entirely of lichen, and the lining and frame of the nest were made of the mid-ribs of dried leaves covered over with lichen and again felted over with cobwebs. The nest was very high, being 3 inches outside measurement, with a shallow cup for the eggs of only about finch. The diameter inside was about 2.1/2 inches."
The second nest was in a slender Grevillea-tree about 30 feet up and placed close to the trunk. The nest contained a single incubated egg.
This single egg is in colour a beautiful pale sea-green, lightly flecked all over with pale yellowish-grey-brown. It measures 22.9 x 16.8 mm.
The pair taken by Tunnard have a white ground, with flecks and innumerable very fine twisted lines of pale reddish, with others underlying of pale lavender. In one egg there are very few lines. These two eggs measure 23.1 x 17.2 and 22.8 x 17.2 mm.
Jenkins took a pair of Minivet's eggs, in a nest typical of the genus, which he believed were those of this species, but they are so small, 19.2 x 13.6 and 19.0 x 13.0 mm., that I cannot think he correctly identified the owner, which was probably Pericrocotus c. mala¬baricus.

The Nidification Of Birds Of The Indian Empire
Baker, Edward Charles Stuart. The nidification of birds of the Indian Empire. Vol. 2. 1933.
Title in Book: 
737. Perieroeotus flammeus flammeus
Spp Author: 
Book Author: 
Edward Charles Stuart Baker
Page No: 
Common name: 
Orange Minivet
Orange Minivet
Pericrocotus flammeus
Vol. 2

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