239. Pteruthius melanotis.
The Chestnut-throated Shrike-Tit.
Pteruthius melanotis, Hodgs. J. A. S. B. xvi, p. 448 (1847) ; Oates in Hume's N. & E. 2nd ed. i, p. 151. Pteruthius aenobarbus (Temm.), apud Horsf. & M. Cat. i, p. 172. Allotrius aenobarbus, Temm., apud Jerd. B. I. ii, p. 246 (part.); Godw.-Aust. J. A. S. B. xxxix, pt. ii, p. 108. Allotrius melanotis (Hodgs.), Hume, N. & E. p. 390; Hume & Dav. S. F. vi, p. 369 ; Hume, S. F. vii, p. 456; id. Cat. no. 611; id. S. F. xi, p. 244. Ptererythrius melanotis (Hodgs.), Oates, B. B. i, p. 139; Gadow, Cat. B. M. viii, p. 117.
Coloration. Male. The forehead, crown, back, scapulars, rump, and upper tail-coverts greenish yellow; a ring of white feathers round the eye; ear-coverts yellow ; a spot on each side of the neck behind the ear-coverts black; the whole nape between these black spots bluish ashy ; a broad supercilium bluish white; lores, continued in two lines, one over the eye and one below, meeting behind the eye, black; chin and throat deep chestnut, extending down to the upper part of the breast; remaining lower plumage bright yellow ; middle tail-feathers green, tipped with black ; the next four pairs black, tipped with white, the tips increasing in size towards the outside of the tail; the outermost feathers wholly white ; wings brown, edged with bluish grey; the tertiaries wholly bluish grey, and all the quills except the earlier primaries tipped with white; lesser wing-coverts black, edged with grey; greater coverts black, broadly tipped with white; primary-coverts and winglet black.
Female. Resembles the male closely; differs in having the tips to the greater wing-coverts salmon-colour instead of white; the chestnut of the throat restricted and not descending to the breast; and in having the lores and the ophthalmic lines pale brown instead of black.
The young resemble the female, but the upper plumage is olive-brown, and the grey nape and black lines on the sides of the head are wanting ; the lower plumage is yellowish white. All the characteristic wing-marks are present from the earliest age.
Bill plumbeous ; iris light brown ; legs and feet fleshy white (Chennell).
Length about 4.7; tail 1.8 ; wing 2.5; tarsus .8; bill from gape .55.
Distribution. The Himalayas from Nepal to Assam ; the Khasi and Eastern Naga hills ; Manipur. Found at high elevations, 7000 feet or so.
Habits, &c. According to Hodgson this bird makes a shallow cup-like nest of moss and fibres suspended in the fork of a branch of a tree. The eggs are pinky lilac, speckled with violet, and measure about .77 by .49: