1011. Ploceus atrigula infortunatus

(1011) Ploceus atrigula infortunatus Hartert.
Ploceus passerinus infortunatus, Fauna B. I., Birds, 2nd ed. vol. iii, p. 71.
Ploceus atrigula infortunatus, ibid. vol. viii, p, 651.
This Southern race of Baya extends South from the range of the last subspecies, through the Malay States, to Sumatra and Nias. It is the form found over nearly the whole of Siam except, perhaps, in the extreme North.
Its nidification is exactly like that of the preceding bird and it breeds freely both, on roofs of houses and in bamboos and trees in the same way as does that bird.
Jerdon, as quoted by Hume, says :—“In some parts of Burma, and more particularly in Rangoon, the Bayas usually select the thatch of a bungalow to suspend their nest from, regardless of the inhabitants therein. In the cantenments of Rangoon very many bungalows may be seen with twenty, thirty or more of these long nests hanging from the ends of the thatched roof ; at one house in which I was an inmate a small colony commenced their labours towards the end of April, and in August, when I revisited the Station, there were above one hundred nests attached all round the house."
Many other collectors in Burma have described to me similar colonies, and one told me that in a house in which he was living the birds’ nests hung so low everywhere, except over the main steps, that one had to be careful jumping on and off the verandah not to hit against them.
Herbert, in his account of this bird’s breeding, says that they use as material “green threads of fibre, torn from the leaves of suitable water-flags or grasses, or sometimes from plantain-leaves, or even cocoanut palm-leaves. The bird alights on the stem of the plant or the leaf and punctures the leaf near the base, he then tears back a piece of the fibre for a few inches, grips the end of it in his beak and flies off to the nest, stripping out the thread for the whole length of the leaf.”
All Bayas, I believe, whatever their species, build entirely new nests every year but, as Herbert explains, sometimes there is a climatic change during which all birds stop building and then, when they restart, the green material has all turned yellow and dry and contrasts with the fresh green threads, making the nest look like an old one done up again.
Oates found it breeding in Pegu in April and Hopwood and Mackenzie took many eggs in April and May, hut in Siam Herbert says they generally commence breeding in the latter half of May and continue to the end of August. Herbert’s and Williamson's earliest and latest dates for eggs of Siam birds are 8th April and 25th August respectively. In Siam neither of those gentlemen ever saw the birds breeding in bungalows.
The eggs are considerably smaller than those of the Northern race. Fifty eggs average 20.0 x 14.7 mm. : maxima 22.5 x 14.9 and 21.1 x 15.4 mm. ; minima 19.0 x 13.5 and 20.1 x 13.1 mm.

The Nidification Of Birds Of The Indian Empire
Baker, Edward Charles Stuart. The nidification of birds of the Indian Empire. Vol. 3. 1934.
Title in Book: 
1011. Ploceus atrigula infortunatus
Spp Author: 
Book Author: 
Edward Charles Stuart Baker
Page No: 
Common name: 
Malay Baya
Ploceus philippinus infortunatus
Vol. 3

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