Sunday, September 11, 2011

Lanka Salalihiniya - Sri Lanka Hill Myna (Gracula ptilogenys)


Rather larger than the Common Mynah; larger than the Salalihiniya but very similar to it except in having only one part of wattles, those at the back of the head, and some black at the base of the beak. Sexes alike, and the young differ only in being duller, and having smaller wattles.


It lives in scattered colonies, but it does not seem to be quite so gregarious as Salalihiniya (The Common Hill-Myna), usually occurring in pairs. It loves high trees, and may be found in the heart of tall forests, as well as on estates and village gardens in their neighbourhood. It is a restless bird. The food consists of wild fruits such as banyan, bo and nuga figs, wild nutmegs, and sapu seeds.

The breeding season is February-May and a secondary season in August-September. The nest is made in a cavity in a tree-bole or large branch. The two eggs are pale prussian blue, blotched with purplish brown. They measure about 33×25mm 


This Grackle inhabits the forests and well-wooded country of the wet zone, ascending the hills, n the wetter districts of the south and west, to at least 6,000 feet. Occasionally it strays into the drier, eastern slopes of the main range, but it is essentially a bird of the wet-zone hills.