849. Sylvia eurruca afflnis

(849) Sylvia curruca affinis (Blyth).
THE INDIAN LESSEE WHITETHROAT.
Sylvia curruca affinis, Fauna B. I., Birds, 2nd ed. vol. ii, p. 451.
The Indian Lesser Whitethroat was supposed to breed in great numbers in Kashmir but, so far as I can ascertain, all the records made refer to the preceding species, althoea, and I can find none which certainly refer to the present species.
Outside our limits it breeds throughout Western Siberia, at least as far East as Transbaikalia and the Yenesei, while Smirnoff took many nests as far East as Uskinskoe. South it is found in Summer in the Tianschan and Altai and almost certainly as far as Baluchistan.
The only record of its breeding within our limits that seems worthy of quoting is that of Betham. He writes (Journ. Bomb. Nat. Hist. Soc. vol. xvii, p. 831, 1907):—“Apparently a few of these little birds remain to breed. I found one nest on the 13th May, containing four incubated eggs, and another on the 31st, with four young. The nest was rather a flimsy structure of twigs, lined with bents and a little hair. They were both placed in low thorn bushes, but not difficult to see.”
The eggs average 17.9 x 13.4 mm., very large for affinis and about normal for althoea, which is the only other egg they can be. They are, however, of the rather dull sienna-tinged colour common in affinis (Siberian) but exceptional in althoea. The bird, shot off the nest, is in the Bombay Museum and has been identified as affinis.
I have twice had eggs given me by Col. Ward as eggs of affinis— one clutch of four taken on 30th May, 1895, and one clutch of four taken on 31st May, 1898.
These are probably both althoea, though at the time I identified a skin sent me as affinis. The eggs are like those of althoea but dull and grey.
The average of twenty-four absolutely authenticated eggs is 17.4 x 13.0 mm.: maxima 19.0 X 13.7 and 18.3 x 14.0 mm. ; minima 15.1 x 12.9 and 17.0 x 12.1 mm.

BookTitle: 
The Nidification Of Birds Of The Indian Empire
Reference: 
Baker, Edward Charles Stuart. The nidification of birds of the Indian Empire. Vol. 2. 1933.
Title in Book: 
849. Sylvia eurruca afflnis
Spp Author: 
Biyth
Book Author: 
Edward Charles Stuart Baker
CatNo: 
849
Year: 
1933
Page No: 
409
Common name: 
Indian Lesser Whitethroat
M_ID: 
25139
M_SN: 
Sylvia curruca halimodendri
Volume: 
Vol. 2
Term name: 
id: 
13975

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Scratchpads developed and conceived by (alphabetical): Ed Baker, Katherine Bouton Alice Heaton Dimitris Koureas, Laurence Livermore, Dave Roberts, Simon Rycroft, Ben Scott, Vince Smith