The Ashy-crowned Finch-Lark.
Alauda grisea, Scop. Del. Flor. et Faun. Insubr. ii, p. 95 (1786). Pyrrhulauda grisea (Scop.), Blyth, Cat. p. 134 ; Horsf. & M. Cat. ii, p. 479; Jerd. B. I. ii, p. 424; Hume, N. & E. p. 479; Ball, S. F. vii, p. 223; id.Cat. no. 760 ; Legge, Birds Ceyl. p. 637 ; Barnes, Birds Bom. p. 277; Sharpe, Cat. B. M. xiii, p. 652 ; Oates in Hume's N. & E. 2nd ed. ii, p. 243.
The Black-bellied Finch-Lark, Jerd.; Diyora, Duri, Dabhak churi, Jothauli, Hind.; Chat-bharai, Dhula chata, Beng.; Poti-pichike, Piyada pichike, Tel.
The young bird resembles the female, but has the margins of the feathers of the upper plumage very distinct and broad and of a pale rufous colour.
Iris dark brown ; legs and feet brownish flesh ; bill bluish flesh, horny brown on the culmen (Butler).
Length about 5.5; tail 1.8; wing 3; tarsus .55; bill from gape .5.
Distribution. The plains of India from Sind to the longitude of Calcutta and from the foot of the Himalayas to Cape Comorin, extending to Ceylon. This species is not recorded from the northern and western portions of the Punjab, but with this exception is found throughout the above area in suitable localities. It is everywhere a permanent resident.
Habits, &c. Breeds from January to August, having two broods in the year. The nest is a small pad of grass, fibres, and feathers placed on the ground. The eggs, two in number, are speckled with brown and grey and measure about .73 by .55.