905. Scotocerca inquieta striata

(905) Scotocerca inquieta striata (Brooks).
Scotocerca inquieta striata, Fauna B. I., Birds, 2nd ed. vol. ii, p. 501.
This little bird breeds outside our limits from Persia to Afghanistan and Baluchistan. From the frontiers of the last two it breeds as far South-East as the Indus in the N.W. Frontier Province.
It is confined to areas which are very barren, stony and desert¬like, breeding at all heights from practically the plains up to 9,000 feet or higher. Ticehurst says (Journ. Bomb. Nat. Hist. Soc. vol. xxxi, p. 700, 1926) :—“This Scrub-Warbler is not uncommon, though locally distributed throughout the length and breadth of Baluchistan, affecting more particularly low scrub-bushes on hill-sides. In summer it is found up to 9,000 feet and I have seen it at this height in October and it is probably quite resident. It occurs, but less commonly, perhaps, in the plains at moderate elevations, but not so low as the Sibi plain. Thus Barnes found it not uncommon at Chaman (4,500 feet). Throughout Kalat and the hills of Southern and Central Makran this Warbler is common, and it occurs, at all events in Winter, as low down as 600 feet.”
Wilhams says that it is common “round Quetta, and affects the low thorny shrub that is to be found both in the valleys and on the hill-sides in Summer. Its call is like the squeaking of mice.
“Several nests found were deserted, or contained dead young. In one nest found on the 8th June there were 3 Warbler’s and one Cuckoo’s egg, and another, which was deserted, contained three of the fosters’ eggs, one broken, and one broken Cuckoo’s egg. In a third, found on the 24th May, three fosters’ and two Cuckoos’, and in a fourth nest a young Cuckoo.” The Cuckoo in each case was Cuculus telephonus.
Meinertzhagen also found several nests round Quetta from March to May.
Osmaston and Briggs (ibid. xxxii, p. 751, 1928) found this Warbler “resident and fairly numerous on the dry rocky hillsides of the spur which separates Kohat from Peshawar, also dry ground in the vicinity of Risalpur.” Osmaston found a nest with six eggs in the former place on 12th March, 1926, and Briggs found a nest containing one young bird on the point of leaving the nest near Risalpur on April 15, 1925.” Osmaston also took a set of six eggs, now in my possession, on the 21st March at Nowshera.
Cock, speaking of the last place, writes (‘Nests and Eggs,’ vol. i, p. 276) :—“It is very common, and towards the end of February a collector could take four or five nests in a day. It builds in a low thorny shrub, about 1.1/2 feet from the ground, makes a globular nest of thin dry grass-stems, with an opening in the side, thickly lined with seed-down and containing four or five eggs. Their nesting operations are over by the end of March.”
Others give similar descriptions of the nest, but say that it is often built within a few inches of the ground, and that it is generally well concealed. Barnes also says that feathers are sometimes used in the lining.
The breeding season lasts from February well into June, but the normal laying season is probably from the end of February to the middle of April.
The full clutch of eggs is five or six, the latter more often than the former ; clutches taken of four, and often of five, are probably imcomplete.
The ground of the eggs is white, while the markings are minute specks of reddish-pink to reddish-brown, numerous at the larger end, where they form ill-defined caps or zones, and decreasing in numbers towards the small end.
The distribution of the spots varies somewhat, in a few eggs being equally numerous everywhere ; in some eggs, also, they are larger than in others.
The shape is a moderate oval, sometimes a little pointed at the small end.
Forty eggs, including Hume’s, average 15.8 x 11.9 mm. : maxima 17.2 x 12.4 and 16.8 x 12.9 mm. ; minima 15.1 x 11.2 mm.
I can find nothing on record about their incubation or nest building.

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: 
905. Scotocerca inquieta striata
Spp Author: 
Book Author: 
Edward Charles Stuart Baker
Page No: 
Common name: 
Streaked Scrub Warbler
Scotocerca inquieta striata
Vol. 2

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