1466. Totanus glottis.
Scolopax glottis and S. totanus, Linn. Syst. Nat. i, p. 245 (1766). Scolopax canescens, Gmel. Syst. Nat,. i, p. 668 (1788). Totanus glottis, Bechst. Orn. Taschenb. pt. 2, p. 287' (1803); Blyth, Cat.p. 265; Jerdon, B. I. iii, p. 700; Blyth, Ibis, 1867, p. 169; King, J. A. S. B. xxxvii, pt. 2, p. 217 ; Godw.-Aust. J. A. S. B. xxxix, pt. 2, p. 274; Stoliczka, J. A. S. B. xli, pt. 2, p. 253; Butter, S. F. iv, p. 18; v, p. 233; Hume & Dav. S. F. vi, p. 463 ; Ball, S. F. vii, p. 229 ; Cripps, ibid. p. 304 ; Hume, Cat. no. 894 ; Scully, S. F. viii, p. 358; Legge, Birds Ceyl. p. 840 ; Vidal, S. F. ix, p. 86; Butler, ibid. p. 430; Biddulph, Ibis, 1881, p. 97 ; Scully, ibid. p. 589 ; Reid, S. F. x, p. 71; Davidson, ibid. p. 321; Hume, ibid. p. 414 ; Barnes, Birds Bom. p. 359 ; Hume, S. F. xi, p. 325; Seebohm, Charadr. p. 355. Totanus canescens, Hume, S. F. i, p. 247; Adam, ibid. p. 397 ; Hume, S. F. ii, p. 299; Armstrong, S. F. iv, p. 344 ; Hume, ib.d. p. 465 ; St. John, Ibis, 1889, p. 177 ; Anders. Yunnan Exped., Aves, p. 677; Oates, B. B. ii, p. 402. Glottis nebularius (Gunner.), Sharpe, Cat. B. M. xxiv, p. 481.
Tantanna, Timtimma, H.; Gotra, Beng.; Peria kotan, Tam.; Maha oliya, Cing.
Coloration in winter. Forehead, supercilia, sides of head before eye, cheeks, and whole lower plumage white; the axillaries sparingly barred with brown ; a few dark brown spots on the lores in front; crown, hind neck, and sides of neck, including the ear-coverts and postorbital area, blackish brown, with broad white edges, broadest on the sinciput; back, scapulars and tertiaries, median and greater coverts ashy brown, edged with black and white and dark-shafted; on the back and coverts there is a more or less distinct inside blackish and outside whitish border; on the scapulars, tertiaries, and under wing-coverts the border consists of alternating dark and light spots ; smaller and outer coverts darker and more uniform ; winglet, primary-coverts, and primaries blackish, the later primaries narrowly edged with white; secondaries ashy brown, with dark brown inside and white outside border; lower back, rump, and tail white; middle rectrices irregularly banded with dark brown, outer rectrices with traces of cross-bands. Many birds, in winter plumage, have the middle tail-feathers partly or wholly ashy brown.
In summer the head throughout, sometimes even including the chin, is streaked with brown; the feathers of the back and the scapulars have broad black centres; the fore neck and sides of the breast are spotted with dark brown, and there are a few spots on the middle of the breast.
Bill dark olive-brown, darker at the tip; irides brown ; legs yellowish green (Oates).
Length 14; tail 3.25; wing 7.5 ; tarsus 2.5 ; bill from gape 2.5.
Distribution. Throughout the Eastern Hemisphere, breeding in Northern Europe and Northern Asia, and wintering in China, S. Asia, and Australia. Common in well-watered parts of Northern India in winter, and generally distributed throughout India, Ceylon, and Burma at that season in suitable localities.
Habits, The Greenshank frequents the edges of rivers and tanks, of estuaries and the sea, and sometimes of marshes, in small or large flocks. It has a shrill trisyllabic call, usually uttered when it rises. Tor the table the Greenshank is the best of the Sandpipers.