744. Pericrocotus roseus roseus

(744) Pericrocotus roseus roseus (Vieill.).
Pericrocotus roseus roseus, Fauna B. I., Birds, 2nd ed. vol. ii, p. 328.
The Rosy Minivet is a bird of low levels and evergreen forests, both the more open and the deeper forest, between the plains and the Lower Himalayas up to at least 7,000 feet, but keeping generally below 5,000.
Marshall was the first to find nests and eggs at Murree at about 5,000 feet and, later, Rattray, Buchanan and other collectors took them in the same hills between 3,000 and 7,000 feet. In the ’nineties Mackinnon took several nests both at Dehra Dun and Mussoorie between 2,500 and 6,000 feet. In the Assam Hills I found them breeding from 2,000 feet upwards, whilst in Dibrugarh Cripps and, later, Coltart found them breeding in the plains. In Burma Hopwood found one nest, with a single hard-set egg, in the Lower Chindwin at about 2,000 feet, and Osmaston took a nest at Maymyio at about 3,500 feet.
As already stated, the nests are built on trees situated either in dense or open evergreen forest, very rarely on one of a clump or spinney of trees in open country. The only exception to this, so far as has been recorded, was the nest taken by Cripps, which “was placed on the upper side of a large lateral branch of a tree that grew on the main garden road, about 15 feet from the ground.”
As a rule they are placed higher than this. Those I have seen myself were generally built on moss and lichen-covered branches of Oaks about 20 or 25 feet from the ground. Rattray, Osmaston and Hopwood all took them from 30 feet or more, while, on the other hand, both Rattray and Coltart took other nests only 10 feet up in small trees.
As regards the nests, they are quite typical of the Minivets. They are the usual saucer-shaped affairs, with vertical, thin walls and thin flat base. The main materials are roots, long needle-like twigs and stems of grass, all interwoven and bound together with cobwebs, and then decorated outside with lichen, bark, or other material to blend with the site where they are built.
One taken by myself in North Cachar had the outer walls decorated with lichen and also with the seed-ends of grasses, these being matted down close with threads from spiders’ webs. One rather curious character which I have noted in more than one nest is that the base and inner walls of the nest are lined with lichen, as well as the exterior walls.
Roughly the nests very from 2.3/4 to 3 inches in width across the top and as much, or even a little more, at the base. The vertical outside walls may be from 1.1/4 to 1.1/2 inch high, and Hume describes Marshall’s nest as 1.3/4 inch high. The cavity is about 2 to 2.1/4 inches in diameter by 1 inch or less in depth.
The breeding season is May and June and I know of no eggs taken in any other months.
The eggs are rather characteristic. Some are just like those of the Short-billed group, though not so handsomely blotched. Most, however, have the ground nearly white, pale clay, or pale olive-stone, while the markings consist of blotches of dark brown and lavender, not nearly so freely scattered about the surface as in brevirostris, and often decidedly more numerous at the larger end, where they form straggly rings, occasionally more dense and definite.
In shape the eggs are broad ovals, the texture normal and glossless.
Forty eggs, including those in the Hume collection, average 19.4 x 15.2 mm. : maxima 21.0 x 14.8 and 19.2 x 15.7 mm. ; minima 17.8 x 14.7 and 19.4 x 14.0 mm.

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: 
744. Pericrocotus roseus roseus
Spp Author: 
Book Author: 
Edward Charles Stuart Baker
Page No: 
Common name: 
Rosy Minivet
Rosy Minivet
Pericrocotus roseus
Vol. 2

Add new comment

This question is for testing whether or not you are a human visitor and to prevent automated spam submissions.
Enter the characters shown in the image.
Scratchpads developed and conceived by (alphabetical): Ed Baker, Katherine Bouton Alice Heaton Dimitris Koureas, Laurence Livermore, Dave Roberts, Simon Rycroft, Ben Scott, Vince Smith