(344) Ixulus occipitalis.
THE CHESTNUT-HEADED IXULUS.
Siva occipitalis Blyth, J. A. S. B., xiii, p. 937 (1844) (Nepal). Ixulus occipitalis. Blanf. & Oates, i, p. 217.
Vernacular names. Temgyeng-pho or Turring-ng-pho (Lepcha). Description. Forehead and crest ferruginous brown; tips of the occipital crest and a bold nuchal patch white; lores and round the eye dusky; ear-coverts white streaked with rufous; the rest of the sides of head and neck ferruginous brown ; back, rump and closed surface of wing dull olive-green, the shafts of the feathers of the upper back and scapulars whitish and the outer webs of the earlier primaries hoary-grey; upper tail-coverts and tail fulvous-brown; chin and throat white; breast pinkish brown, streaked with brown ; abdomen and flanks olivaceous, the middle of the former paler; under tail-coverts ferruginous.
Colours of soft parts. Iris brown or red-brown; bill black; legs pale yellowish, fleshy-brown or " dull olivaceous " (Stevens).
Measurements. Total length about 130 mm.; wing 64 to 68 mm.; tail about 50 to 52 mm,; tarsus about 20 mm.; culmen about 10 mm.
Distribution. Garhwal, Nepal, Sikkim and Bhutan to the extreme east of Assam, Manipur aud the Chittagong Hill tracts.
Nidification. This Ixulus breeds between 4,000 and 7,000 feet in May and June, the nest varying very greatly in character, shape and position. Normally it is domed and placed either on or close to the ground, but sometimes it is semi-domed or merely deep cup-shaped and may be built in a branch of a tree or shrub, in amongst the lichen and moss hanging from a trunk or bough, or it may even be placed in a niche in a rock. The material used is always chiefly moss but this may be mixed to a lesser or greater extent with roots and chips of leaves or bracken, the lining being of roots alone. The eggs number three or four and are in every respect just like those of our English Swallow but the markings are more numerous as well as bolder and larger. Sixty eggs average 19.3 x 14.2 mm. and the extremes are 21.3 X 14.0 mm., 20.1 x 15.0 mm. and 17.3 x l4.0 mm.
Habits. These are just like those of Yuhina. They fly well, and their note is a rather sweet, soft chatter. They are very arboreal and may sometimes be seen on the highest trees. They keep almost exclusively to evergreen forest.