(880) Acanthopneuste lugubris.
The Dull Green Willow-Warbles.
Phyllopneuste lugubris Blyth, A. M. N. H., xii, p. 98 (1843) (Calcutta). Acanthopneuste lugubris. Blanf. & Oates. i, p. 417.
Vernacular names. None recorded.
Description. Very like A. magnirostris, from which it differs in wing-formula. It is slightly darker and smaller; the superciliary streak is less developed and is more greenish yellow, less buff.
Colours of soft parts as in the Large-billed Willow-Warbler.
Measurements. Total length about 125 mm.; wing 55 to 64 mm.; tail 41 to 49 mm.; tarsus about 18 to 19 mm.; culmen 9 to 10 mm. The second primary is intermediate between the ninth and tenth.
Distribution. Breeding from Garhwal to East Tibet and N.W. China and the Tsinling Mts., also possibly Kashmir. In Winter, Eastern India, Assam, Burma, Yunnan, Annam, Siam, Malay States and South China.
Nidification. Mr. S. L. Whymper took several nests of this bird in the Nila Valley in Garhwal in 1910, and later Mr. B. B. Osmaston found it breeding between 11,500 and 12,500 feet elevation in the Dhauli Valley of the same hills. A nest taken by the latter in a crevice in the side of an old birch-tree, about six inches from the ground, was built of moss and lichen lined with felted moss mixed with a few hairs and feathers. It was well put together, domed, and was taken on the 26th June. The two eggs it contained were pure white and measured 15.7 x 11.7 mm. A nest and eggs sent me from Gyantse in Tibet resemble in every respect those found by Mr. Osmaston. The eggs vary in size between 16.2 x 12.2 and 15.5 x 11.7 mm., and were taken on the 28th June at an altitude of about 13,000 feet.
Habits. In Summer this Willow-Warbler is found at great heights, seldom below 10,000 feet and in Tibet certainly up to 15,000 feet. In Winter it wanders South in India into Bengal, Assam and Burma South to Tenasserim. The numerous records of its occurrence in the South and West are probably due to mistakes in identification, though it is almost certain to occur in the plains of the United Provinces. It is found during the breeding-season in forested country with open glades and grass-covered hill-sides but in Winter in almost any kind of country provided there are sufficient trees. Osmaston says that its note is a loud Sparrow-like chirp, repeated several times in succession.