1384. Turnix tanki.
The Indian Button-Quail.
Turnix tanki (Buch. Ham.), Blyth, J. A. S. B. xii, p. 180* (1843); id. Ibis, 1867, p. 161; Ogilvie Grant, Ibis, 1889, p. 466; id. Cat. B. M. xxii, p. 544 ; Oates in Hume's N. & E. 2nd ed. iii, p. 370. Hemipodius joudera, Hodgs. in Gray's Zool. Misc. p. 85 (1844), descr. nulla. Turnix dussumieri, apud Blyth, Cat. p. 256; Jerdon, B. I. iii, p. 599 ; Godw.-Aust. J. A. S. B. xliii, pt. 2, p. 174 ; nec Temm. Turnix joudera, Butler. S. F. iv, p. 8; v, p. 231; ix, p. 424 ; Hume, S. F. iv, p. 225 ; Ball, S. F. vii, p. 226; Hume & Marsh. Game B. ii, p. 187, pl.; Hume, Cat. no. 834; Reid, S. P. x,p. 64; Davison, ibid. p. 412; Terry, ibid. p. 479; Taylor, ibid. p. 529; Barnes, Birds Bom. p. 318.
Lawd, Lawd-butai, H.; Pedda daba-gundlu, Tel.
Coloration. Male. Sides of crown blackish, the feathers with light brown margins, mesial line of crown and forehead generally pale ; supercilia and sides of head buff, with, in most specimens, black tips to the feathers ; upper parts greyish brown, with irregular black cross-bars and vermiculation, almost disappearing in old birds, generally traces of buff tips and edgings remain; most of the wing-coverts (except the primary-coverts) buff, each with a broad subterminal black spot; quills and primary-coverts brown ; outer primaries with narrow buff outer margins; chin and throat whitish, rest of lower parts buff, darker and brownish in the middle of the breast; feathers of sides of breast with subterminal round or crescentic black spots.
Females have a broad ferruginous red collar on the back and sides of the neck.
Immature birds of both sexes have the upper parts tinged with ferruginous red throughout; there is no distinct collar in the young female; the black markings on the back are more distinct and coarser, and the feathers have buff tips and edges, not to so great an extent, however, as in T. pugnax and T. blanfordi.
Bill, legs, feet, and claws orange-yellow ; irides white; in males the culmen and tip of the lower mandible are brown.
Length of female 6.5; tail 1.25 ; wing 3.5; tarsus .9; bill from gape .7. Length of male 6; wing
Distribution. Throughout India, from the Himalayas, at an elevation of about 4000 feet, to Travancore. To the eastward this bird has been found in the Bhutan Duars, Tipperah, and the Naga hills (I have examined Godwin-Austen's specimen from the latter), but is replaced in Assam, Manipur, and Burma by T. blanfordi. To the westward T. tanki is found, in the rainy season at all events, in Cutch, Sind, and Rajputana.
Habits, &c. A solitary, silent, skulking bird, found usually iu grassy patches in jungle or on the borders of cultivation. It breeds in July and August in Upper India, about April in Mysore, and lays four eggs of the usual Turnix type, measuring about .86, by .75.