(575) Turdus kessleri.
Turdus kesslri Przew., Mong. Stran. Tangut.,p. 62 (1876) (Kansu).
Vernacular names. None recorded.
Description.— Adult male. Whole head, neck and extreme upper breast black; interscapulars, back and breast dull rufous white changing into dull dark rufous on lower back, rump, upper tail-coverts, flanks and abdomen ; wings and tail black.
Colours of soft parts. Iris brown ; bill yellow, dusky at tip; legs and feet horny-brown
Measurements. Total length about 275 mm.; wing 148 to 155 mm.; tail 109 to 118 mm.; tarsus 38 mm.; culmen 21 mm.
Female. Head and neck, wings and tail dark brown ; remaining plumage ashy grey, more rufescent below and darker and browner on upper tail-coverts.
Measurements. Wing 143 to 148 mm.; tail 112 to 113 mm.; culmen 21 mm.
Distribution. East Tibet, Setchuan, Koko-Nur to Kansu. A single specimen has been killed in Sikkim close to Darjeeling at about 9,000 feet and Mandelli also obtained it in Tibet close to the Sikkim border.
Nidification. Pleske describes two nests as made of grass roots etc. with hair and feathers of Perdix sifanica in the lining and says they were placed in hollows in rocks beside a stream. The eggs are said to be like those of the Fieldfare and ten eggs average 31.5 x 22.7 mm.
Habits. This is a bird of great altitudes, breeding at 12,000 feet among conifers or junipers on the great wooded plateaus of Eastern Tibet and West China Even in Winter it appears only to descend to about 5,000 feet and never to the Plains.