Pavo cristatus, Linne.
Vernacular Names.—[Mor, Upper and Central India generally ; Ta-us (Muham-madans, often), Lan-duri (Pea-hen), Mahratta Districts; Menjur, Western Duars, &>c. ; Mujur, Nepal Tarai; Mabja (Bhutia) ; Mong-yung (Lepcha) ; Moir, Moira,, Assam; Dod6, Garo Hills; Myl (Tamil); Nimili (Telugu) ; Nowl (Canarese), Mysore.
IN Indian Bird par excellence, the Common Pea-Fowl, though widely spread throughout India Proper, does not normally extend elsewhere except into Ceylon and Assam. Even within these limits it is not by any means universally spread ; it likes water and cultivation, and in no way shuns the abodes of men. But there may be too much water, cultivation, and population to suit its taste. For instance, though common enough in Midnapore and Burdwan, it does not occur wild in the 24-Pergunnahs (though a few have run wild from the Oudh Gardens in Garden "Reach) or in Jessore (unless possibly in the Sundarbans), or in Nuddea, or in the greater part of Hooghly, and many other districts might be mentioned in India Proper in which it is either wanting or extremely scarce.
It is not found really wild in Sind, though it has been introduced, of late years, into the Eastern Nara Districts, and occurs in a semi-domesticated state about Hyderabad and other places in Lower Sind. It does not occur in the Punjab Trans-Indus, nor does it, Colonel Graham assures me after careful enquiries, go eastwards beyond the valley of Assam. Sadiya appears to be its easternmost limit. " I have now been," writes Colonel Graham, " over much of the country on both banks of the Brahmaputra, for 40 miles east of Sadiya, and have not seen a Pea-Fowl of any description, nor heard one. "I have further examined the Khamptis, Singphos, and Digama Mishmis, coming from the east, and they deny the occurrence of any Peacock in their direction. " The Common Pea-Fowl are all over Assam, but get very much scarcer as you go eastwards, disappearing altogether beyond Sadiya."
Colonel Coomber says :—" The Pea-Fowl is common enough in Assam. I have met with it in every district, and on both sides of the Brahmaputra, I have seen no second kind, it is excessively common in the Garo Hills and in others of the hills south of the Assam Valley." It does not, however, Captain Williamson tells me, occur in the Khasi Hills. Heretofore the idea has been that the Common Pea-Fowl did not go eastwards of the Garo Hills and the low valleys running into these, and that elsewhere in Assam it was replaced by the Burmese bird ; but I can find no evidence to support this view. I have never been in Assam, nor have I ever seen specimens of Pea-Fowl thence, but at least a dozen officers now in Assam write to say that the Common Pea-Fowl is abundant there, and that they have seen no other. It is said to be found in Chittagong, but this requires confirmation. I cannot learn that it occurs in Sylhet, or Cachar, or Manipur, or in the Eastern Naga Hills, or in Tipperah, so that it is difficult to believe in its existence wild in Chittagong, though it may not impossibly have been introduced there. In the An damans, it has been introduced, and now, I believe, breeds freely there in the neighbourhood of the settlements ; for a long time it was entirely confined to Ross Island, where the vociferous cries of scores, at all hours, whenever a gun was fired or a gong struck, rendered it, to my notion, a serious nuisance.
As a rule, the Pea-Fowl is not a bird of high elevations. On the Nilgiris I know it occurs as high as 5,000 feet at Cook's Hill3 on the N. E. slopes of those mountains, and it may even, as Jerdon says so, though I have been unable to verify this, occur up to 6,ooo feet, but it does not, I believe, ascend the Pulneys, or the Ceylon Hills, to elevations of above 3,000 feet ; and in the Himalayas, though in the river valleys it penetrates, as in Central Garhwal, far into the hills, it is rarely seen above 2,000 feet. I have however shot it at over 3,000 feet in the lower ranges that overlook the Dun, and at over 4,000 near Bilaspur, west of Simla ; and Mr. Young writes to me that it " occurs in one locality in the north of Mandi-Doralban, and in Kulu Seoraj at an altitude of 6,000 feet, in both instances haunting one particular valley and not extending beyond it." I suspect, however, that at both these localities and near Bilaspur it has been introduced, and when Dr. Scully, writing from Nepal, says :— " It is found along the outer base of the sandstone range, about Bishiaksh, but not in any great numbers ; it does not extend further into the hills, nor occur in a wild state in the valley of Nepal; nor does it, to the best of my belief, ascend the hills to a height exceeding 2,000 feet, if even that;"— he is only, I think, describing the normal distribution of the bird along the entire southern face of the Himalayas.
BROKEN AND jungly ground, where good cover exists, near water on the one hand, and cultivation on the other, is the favourite resort of the Pea-Fowl, and wherever this favourable combination exists within the limits indicated, there the Pea-Fowl is sure to abound. Canals, with their grass and tree-clad banks, are, in Upper India, pet abiding places of the Pea-Fowl. I have seen a canal opened out through a dry bare Doab district, where only here and there a few of these birds, perhaps a dozen in day's journey, were to be met with ; and ten years later, driving down the canal road (the canal by that time with high grass-clad banks and a belt of trees and grass on either side), I have counted several scores in one of the three-mile lengths that on the Ganges canal intervene between bridge and bridge. But it is not only in such seemingly suitable localities that this species thrives amazingly; it is to be seen almost throughout Rajputana. In and about the rocky and semi-desert tracts, for instance, in which lie Jeypore, and the more ancient capital of that state, Umber, myriads of Pea-Fowl are to be met with. Everywhere throughout Upper India* a certain superstitious reverence attaches to the Pea-Fowl, and the mass of the population more or less dislike their slaughter ; but in these Native States the prohibition is absolute, and no man, Native or European, can or does molest them, though tigers and leopards, if the people speak truly, are less amenable to authority.
Talking of these, is there, I would ask, any foundation for the universal belief that exists amongst natives throughout the length and breadth of the land, that these beasts feed largely on Pea-Fowl; that when these latter are surprised, especially by leopards, the cocks either fly at and buffet the leopards, or else stand paralysed with fear, in either case falling an easy prey to the cruel cat ? The late Colonel Tytler used to relate how one day, when stalking a Peacock, he was surprised to find that he had suddenly closely approached it, and that, bestowing no thought on him, it seemed intently gazing on a tiny patch of jungle just in front. Halting for a moment, he discovered a leopard stealthily crawling on its belly through the jungle towards the Peacock. He was much astonished ; he had never heard of leopards in the neighbourhood, but his astonishment exceeded all bounds when, on his raising the gun (he had ball in one barrel), and covering the leopard, it suddenly threw up both its paws and shrieked in a voice hoarse with terror " Nehin Sahib, Nehin Sahib, mut chulao" (No sir, No sir, don't fire). He said that for a moment he thought he must be going mad, floods of reminiscences of enchanted princes, fairy tales, wehr-wolves, and the like, flashed like lightning through his mind. The next, he saw a man very cleverly got up in a leopard skin, with a well-stuffed head, and a bow and arrows in one paw, standing before him.
Nothing can be more charming than Colonel Tickell's account of this species :—
" Although Pea-Fowl are scattered over the forests of Central and South-Central India, they are much more numerous in the Trans-Gangetic provinces, and all along the Tarai. In the northerly parts of Tirhoot, on the Nepal frontier, I have seen upwards of fifty or sixty on the wing at a time, making for the forests when roused up by our elephants. So common, indeed, is this bird in the parts of India above enumerated, and so tame, and so much do the natives dislike their being killed, that the -sportsman seldom molests them. Nevertheless, a Peachick is by no means to be despised on the table, and an old bird, cock or hen, furnishes grand stock for a tureen of good soup.
"To the south of the Ganges, the Peacock confines himself entirely to the wooded and hilly tracts, especially near cultivation, feeding at daybreak and dusk, and withdrawing at other times into the thickest jungle. In these countries— Rajmehal, the Daman-i-koh, Beerbhoom, Midnapoor, Chota Nagpore, Singh- bhoom, and so on, south to Sambalpur and Cuttack— it is as shy and wild as in Northern India it is tame and confiding ; in fact, it is almost as difficult to stalk a deer as an old Peacock and in my earlier years in India many a weary hour of profitless labour have I spent in endeavouring to creep within shot of some splendid fellow whose glorious train excited my ornitho. logical cupidity. When followed in this manner, without a dog, the Peacock keeps running before the sportsman, gliding and slipping through apparently impervious thickets, occasionally stopping in some patch of grass, from whence, with outstretched neck, he regards his pursuer; and at length, if hard pressed, rising heavily on wing and flying far into the densest covert, leaving the baffled " gunner" to make the best of his way out into the open, where the morning sun may dry his clothing drenched with the chilling dew. Of an evening, one may obtain a good shot or two by walking through the jungle skirting a field of wheat, rice, or vetch, some fifty yards in advance of two or three beaters, who are instructed to keep that distance from you. Pea-Fowl thus invaded in the thick tangle of a luxuriant crop run very little, and will rise just in advance of the beaters, so as to give the sportsman a fair shot. A good thing is valued the more for Its scarcity. The Peacock is sufficiently rare in the parts of India. I am now referring to, to be there prized accordingly ; and to see a magnificent fellow, with his long train, coming over you, and then tumble him over— head over heels, head over heels— with a thump on the ground as he crashes through the boughs, is by no means an unpleasant sight, to say nothing of its being very pretty ball practice.
" Pea-Fowl roost at night on high trees. The highest they can get in the jungle they inhabit; but they select the lowest branches for their perch. They are rather late in roosting ; I have heard them flying up to their berths long after sunset, and when the Night Jars had been for some time abroad, flitting over the dusky jungle. The cock bird invariably leads the way, rising suddenly from the brushwood near the roosting tree, with a loud " kok-kok-kok-kok," and being presently followed by his harem— four or five hens. If marked to their roosting place, and if it be a clear moonlight night, they may be easily shot, for, not knowing where to go, they will frequently remain on the tree till fired at two or three times. When forced to quit, they fly towards the ground, and pass the rest of the night as well as they can, sometimes falling a prey to leopards or wild cats. If there are hills in the jungle, the Pea-Fowl select some prominent tree on the top, or half-way up. In the Nilgiris and other mountain regions in Southern India, says Jerdon, this bird ascends to the height of 6,000 feet above the sea; but in Sikhim (Darjeeling) and other parts of the Himalaya, not higher than 2,000 feet. For my part I have never seen Pea-Fowl at any elevation above the Tarai, though I have rambled about the hills in Sikhim at Pankabari, and near Bichiako, and Harrakwari, on the Nepal frontier. In the jungle mahals and Singhbhoom, the Pea-Fowl roost on small hills, but descend to the cultivated valleys to feed On the loftier hills of those regions, such as Dalma, Parasnath, and the Chutia range above the Damoodur, I have never met with therm.
" In the months of December and January the temperature in the forests of Central India, especially in the valleys, is very low, and the cold, from sudden evaporation, intense at sunrise. The Pea-Fowl in the forests may be observed at such times still roosting, long after the sun has risen above the horizon. As the mist rises off the valleys, and gathering into little clouds, goes rolling up the hill-sides till lost in the ethereal blue, the Pea-Fowl descend from their perch on some huge simal or sal tree, and, threading their way in silence through the underwood, emerge into the fields, and make sad havoc with the channa, urad (both vetches), wheat, or rice. When sated, they retire into the neighbouring thin jungle, and there preen themselves, and dry their bedewed plumage in the sun. The cock stands on a mound, or a fallen trunk, and sends forth his well-known cry, " pehaun— pehaun," which is soon answered from other parts of the forest. The hens ramble about, or lie down dusting their plumage, and so they pass the early hours while the air is still cool, and hundreds of little birds are flitting and chirruping about the scarlet blossoms of the " palas" or the " simal." As the sun rises, and the dewy sparkle on the foliage dries up, the air becomes hot and still, the feathered songsters vanish into shady nooks, and our friends, the Pea-Fowl, depart silently into the coolest depths of the forest, to some little sandy stream canopied by verdant boughs, or to thick beds of reeds and grass, or dense thorny brakes overshadowed by mossy rocks, where, though the sun blaze over the open country, the green shades are cool, and the silence of repose unbroken, though the shrill cry of the cicada may be heard ringing faintly through the wood.
"These birds cease to congregate soon after the crops are off the ground. The pairing season is in the early part of the hot weather. The Peacock has then assumed his full train, that is, the longest or last rows of his upper tail-coverts, which he displays of a morning, strutting about before his wives. These strange gestures, which the natives gravely denominate the Peacock's nautch, or dance, are very similar to those of a turkey-cock, and accompanied by an occasional odd shiver of the quills, produced apparently by a convulsive jerk of the abdomen. The same thing occurs in a turkey-cock— a little start and a puff and a short run forward, as if something had exploded unpleasantly close behind him. These are all blandishments, we are told, to allure the female, and doubtless have a most fascinating effect."
Mr. Reid remarks that:— " Taking Oudh as a whole, Pea-Fowl are found abundantly wherever suitable localities occur, and they are specially numerous in the Tarai. They abound in the extensive dhak and thorn jungles so characteristic of many parts of the province, and the banks of rivers and nalas passing through these are never-failing resorts. Forests with plenty of brushwood, well-wooded ravines and bamboo brakes, are all favourite haunts ; while they may also be found in a semi-domesticated state, dodging about village pan-fields, gardens and groves.
" They appear to be pretty regular in their habits, frequenting the same feeding-grounds by day, and returning to the same perch at night. Towards dusk they may be seen flying into the solitary banyan, and other wild-fig trees, that here and there rise above the level of the surrounding jungle, and segregated thus, it is not an unusual thing to hear them calling to and answering each other at all hours of the night.
" They rest in thickets during the heat of the day, and come forth to the fields and open glades to feed in the mornings and evenings.
" They live for the most part on grain when procurable, but do not object to insects and grubs, and—sorry am I to say it— snakes ! Years ago— I kept no notes at the time, but remember the circumstance well— my cook took a small snake, about 8 inches long, from the stomach of one which I had given him to clean."
Adams tells us that:— "At Kallar Kahar, in the Salt Range of the Punjab, there are several shrines where the Pea-Fowl collect from the neighbouring jungles to be fed by the fakirs and religious devotees. There at break of day, as the sportsman is clambering over the rough sides of the ravines in quest of Oorial (Ovis vignii), he will often be struck with the scene, as hundreds of male Pea-Fowl, in all their native elegance and beauty, dash down the glens with a rapidity of flight unknown to the denizens of the English farmyard. Many sportsmen ignore this species, and will not allow it a place in their game-list. It is true that in many localities they might be killed with little trouble ; but among the dense and tangled jungles of the lower Himalayan ranges, it is wild and wary."
" Pea-Fowl," says Burgess, " abound in the jungles, clothing the slopes of the ghats, and in some wooded districts in the interior. In the Deccan, in the wooded hilly portions of the districts of Jainkhair and Scogao, they were plentiful; and a remarkably pretty sight it was to see them stalking about near the grain-stacks, or running along the bushy banks of the nalas. They are wary birds, and lead the sportsman a good chase when once they take to the low spurs of the hills, up which they run with incredible swiftness. The best plan to secure them is to wait for their roosting-time, under the trees to which they resort. Thick mango trees appear to be their favourite resting places."
" In no part of Ratnagiri are Pea-Fowl kept in a state of semi-domesticity as in other parts of India, and they are consequently wild and shy wherever found.
" In the Satara and Poona districts east of the Ghats, Pea-Fowl are found in large Babul (Acacia arabica) thickets, and in hill-side jungles, where the latter exist. In any parts of these districts Pea-Fowl are both plentiful and comparatively tame. In some native states, such as Sangli and Miraj in the Southern Mahratta Country, Pea-Fowl are jealously preserved.
" In the jungles and forests Pea-Fowl eat various fruits and berries, such as the Wild Fig (Covillia glomerata) and the Korinda, (Carissa carandas). In the neighbourhood of cultivated ground the crop they particularly affect is maize."
Mr. Sanderson, so well known by his charming work on Elephant-catching and sport in Mysore, writes to me:— "Pea-Fowl are common throughout Mysore in the lighter belt of jungle that intervenes between heavy forests and cultivation, and in detached low ranges of scrub-covered hills in the open country. They are encouraged in places by the owners of cocoanut and other gardens, as it is a common native belief that they are enemies to snakes. They feed in the grain fields bordering on jungles, and do considerable damage when the grain is nearly ripe, and they move considerable distances at different seasons, tempted by ripening crops or jungle fruits.
" Pea-Fowl usually commence their discordant cries at half past two in the morning, and not unfrequently cry at intervals throughout moonlight nights. They raise a shrill clamour during the day on seeing tigers or other beasts of prey, or at unusual sounds, such as the firing of a gun in the jungles.
" Pea-Fowl run very fast, but the old cocks, burthened with tails .six feet in length, are poor flyers, and I have frequently seen my men run them down during the hot hours of the day by forcing them to take two or three long flights in succession, in places where they could be driven from one detached patch of jungle to another.
" The old cocks are in full plumage from June to December, and then cast their trains. " Pea-Fowl are, perhaps, the most wary of all jungle creatures. In beating for large game, where the sportsmen are posted ahead in trees, their presence may pass undetected by other animals, but rarely by Pea-Fowl,
" I have shot them on bright moonlight nights by beating the trees situated near cultivated lands where they are known to roost, and, on the 1st September 1872, I made a day after Pea-Fowl in lieu of Partridges, in some islands near Mandigiri, in the Hamavati river in Mysore, and by posting markers along both banks of the river, to prevent the birds taking to the main land, I bagged twelve cocks in full plumage after a day's hard work. The Natives have no feeling against their being shot in Mysore." I once shot a hen of a uniform dirty yellow colour, and saw another like her in the same locality." The native trappers Imitate the various cries of these birds, without any artificial aids to the voice, very cleverly, and decoy them into snares laid for them. When caught, the bird's eyes are immediately closed by the stem of a feather being passed through both eyelids, so as to sew them together ; they are then placed on a perch, and do not move though carried from place to place."Albino, or at any rate white varieties, or nearly white ones, occasionally, as noticed by Mr. Sanderson, occur wild. They have quite a permanent breed at home of this white bird, and most of the white specimens that we see in menageries of Rajas here have been brought out from Europe by Jamrach and others ; but I have known one or two of these shot in quite wild out-of-the-way places. Thus Dr. King showed me at Dehra a skin of a white specimen, a female, that had been shot in the wilds of the Eastern Dun, which precisely resembled the bird that Mr. Elliot figures as the female of another variety, commonly known as the Japanned Peacock, Pavo nigripennis, of Sclater, This latter variety has never yet been met with except in captivity, and it would be well for sportsmen to examine the specimens they shoot, and see if they ever do meet with it in a wild state.
In nigripennis the whole of the scapulars and wing-coverts (which in the common Peacock are cream-coloured with transverse blackish markings) are black, with narrow green edgings, which towards the carpal joint become bluish ; the metallic green of the back is of a more golden tint, and the thighs are black instead of being pale drab as in cristatus.Some people maintain that this is a distinct species of which the habitat is as yet unknown ; others consider it merely a variety that has arisen in captivity in Europe. It would be extremely interesting should it prove to occur wild, and any one shooting such a bird should preserve the skin, however roughly.
THE PEA-FoWL, according to my experience, lives pretty much all the year" round and breeds in the same neighbourhood. Colonel Tickell talks of multitudes of them migrating 11o to 150 miles yearly from the plains to the Tarai, but I have had no experience of this. Canal banks fringed with trees, and traversing rich cultivation are, as I have already remarked, their especial delight, and in such localities I have found a great many nests, my search for them being stimulated by the conviction that a wild Peahen's eggs are delicious eating, far preferable to a Turkey's, or indeed to any other gallinaceous bird's eggs that I have ever tried. Their nests are not confined to the plains, but in the Himalayas, Nilgiris, and other suitable ranges occur up to elevations of from 1,ooo to 2,000 feet, and in the Nilgiris, it is said, to 5,000 feet.The great majority of our Pea- Fowl in Upper India lay during July and August, but I have found eggs as late as the middle of October. The nest is made in amongst thick grass or in dense bushes, often on a sloping bank, and is a broad depression scratched by the hen, and lined with a few leaves and twigs, or a little grass. I have never myself found eggs in the abnormal situations described below by Mr. A. Anderson.I have never found more than eight eggs in any nest, and I think that six or seven are the usual complement; but natives say (and see also Miss Cockburn's remarks) that they lay at times much larger numbers.
Captain G. F. L. Marshall says:—"The Pea-Fowl breed during the rains in the Saharanpur, Bulandshahr and Aligarh districts. The eggs are laid on the ground, usually among the thick underwood on the canal banks." Near Bulandshahr, I got six eggs on the 27th July ; the shell is much pitted, pure fawn colour in some, and stained with darker brown in others." Again, in the Aligarh District, I found four fresh eggs on the 5th August; they were laid on the bare ground, inside, but near the edge of an old heap of dry sticks, round which grass had sprung up tall and thick ; this small thicket was in an open plain close to a road with no bushes or other undergrowth near." But they sometimes breed later, and choose more exposed situations even than this. On the 31st August I took three fresh eggs laid without any attempt at concealment whatever : they were on the ground on a dry patch amongst very short grass under the trees on the canal bank ; there was no undergrowth, and the eggs could be seen from some distance."
Mr. R. M. Adam remarks :—" I had eggs of this species brought to me in Agra on the 14th October. The eggs were a good deal incubated."
Mr. A. Anderson writes to me that " the Pea-Fowl breeds in the North-Western Provinces during June, July and August, the latter being about the most general month. About November, the young birds are the size of chickens, and are then well worth shooting for the table. Sometimes, though rarely, I have seen ten and twelve chicks following one hen; but these, no doubt,, are amalgamated broods, for I have never found more than six eggs in one nest (I believe, however, that they occasionally lay up to seven or eight), and sometimes only three or four.
" Three years ago, a chaprassi, who, from long practice, had become somewhat arboreal in his habits, brought me three fresh Pea-Fowl's eggs from an old nest of Gyps bengalensis. Shortly afterwards I saw the nest, which was situated on a huge horizontal bough of a Burgot, in the centre of some Dhak jungle, and on which all the Pea-Fowl in the neighbourhood were in the habit of roosting. I have every reason to believe my chaprassi, because he had no object in wishing to deceive me, and my own experience is in favour of these birds laying at high elevations (the same remark is applicable to a good many gallinaceous birds), for I have on several occasions taken their eggs from the roofs of huts in deserted villages, high mounds, and from the tops of masonry mosques on which rank vegetation grew to the height of two or three feet."From the Nilgiris Miss Cockburn writes :—" The Peahen lays from ten to fifteen eggs and forms a nest by scratching a slight place in the ground, and gathering a few dry leaves and sticks. The eggs are generally found in June and July, and are a dingy buffy white."
The eggs are typical Rasorial ones, much like gigantic Guinea-fowls' eggs, with thick, very strong and glossy shells, closely pitted over their whole surface with minute pores, which are, however, more deeply indented and more conspicuous in some specimens than others. In shape, they vary much ; some are very broad, some decidedly elongated ovals, so that some more resemble in shape an English Pheasant's eggs, and others are more like a Turkey's: all are more or less pointed towards the small end. The colour, within certain limits, also varies much ; some are almost pure white, others are a rich cafe au lait or reddish buff; others, again, are dingy yellowish buff, but typically they are a pale pinkish cafe au lait colour. Occasionally specimens are met with thickly freckled with pale reddish brown, feeble reproductions of the Moonal's eggs ; but the vast majority are entirely unspotted.
In length they vary from 2.55 to 3.0, and in breadth from 1.92 to 2.2 ; but the average of forty eggs is 274 by 2.05.
MALES, MEASURE.— Length, 8o to 92 ; to end of true tail only, 40 to 46 ; the train in full breeding plumage projects from 40 to 48 inches (and, I have been assured, even 54 inches) beyond the end of the true tail; wing, 18 to 19; tail from vent, 18 to 21 ; tarsus, 5.5 to 575 ; bill from gape, 1-9. Weight, 9 to 11 1/4 lb.
The plate.— The bird is so well known that we considered it unnecessary to give any separate plate of it ; but a smaller figure of it has been introduced below that of the Burmese Pea-Fowl, so as to enable the leading differences between the two species to he seized at a glance.
Mr. Reid, however, writes :—" So far as I know, the natives of Oudh nowhere object to Pea-Fowl being shot; but if asked whether there are any in the neighbourhood, they will most likely reply in the negative. Generally speaking, however, there is no difficulty in getting them to give information, and frequently, without being asked, they will suggest a little Pea-Fowl shooting, and themselves enter enthusiastically into the sport.
" Although sportsmen, as a rule, do not care about shooting Pea-Fowl, it is as well that they should know that dogs are preferable to beaters for flushing the birds. They will hide from man, but rise at once when they find a dog on their track. In thick jungle, two or three plucky terriers answer the purpose admirably.''
Mr. Whitten, however, tells me that he once found a nest near Chomoha, on the top of a large haystack.