(936) Prinia socialis stewarti.
Stewart's Ashy Wren-Warbler.
Prinia stewarti Blyth, J. A. S. B.,xvi, p. 455 (1847) (Agra). Prinia socialis. Blanf. & Oates, i, p. 450 (part).
Vernacular names. Phutki, Kala-phutki (Hin.).
Description. I can see no difference in the two forms, except that the lower plumage of Northern birds is decidedly more rich and rufous than it is in Southern birds.
Colours of soft parts as in P. s. socialis.
Measurements. Wing 45 to 52 mm.; tail 43 to 75 mm.
Distribution. The whole of Northern India Bast of the Chenab to Eastern Assam. South to Surat, Khandesh and Nagpore and thence South to the mouth of the Godavari. Over a very wide area, both North and South of this imaginary line, the race is quite indeterminate in the majority of specimens, though in the extremes of their habitats the differences are well marked.
Nidification. In no way different from that of the last bird, but it lays from four to six eggs, often five. It is essentially a bird of gardens, cultivation and villages, though in Assam it is also found in grass-lands and in thin secondary jungle. Sixty eggs average 15.1 x 12.2 mm.; maxima 16.1 x 12.0 and 15.2 x 13.1 mm.: minima 14.1 X 10.9 mm.
They breed as soon as the Bains break in June to the end of August, but in Assam, like the preceding "Warbler, they commence to breed in May or even in April. They breed up to 4,000 feet, but, more commonly, under 2,000 feet.
Habits. The same as those of P. s. socialis.