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Criticizing these remarks, however, the late Mr. Blyth wrote:–

“Do the males of these birds lose the black cap in winter 2 Certainly not the former—at least as observed in captivity—and therefore I cannot help doubting exceedingly that they do so in the wild state. Upon a bad Indian drawing of the Orphean Warbler, reproduced in the ‘Proceedings of the Zoological Society' for 1851 (p. 195, pl. 43), the supposed Artamus cucullatus was sought to be established. The habits of the Orphean Warbler are thus described in Jerdon's ‘Birds of India’—in which country, by the way, it passes the winter, the males then retaining their black cap :- It frequents groves, gardens, hedges, single trees, and even low bushes on the plains; is very active and restless, incessantly moving about from Dranch to branch, clinging to the twigs, and feeding on various insects, grubs, and caterpillars, and also on flower buds. It is sometimes

seen alone, at other times two or three together.’ Undoubtedly it must needs feed also on soft fruits. The hen of this bird bears an exceedingly close resemblance to the Lesser Whitethroat, except in size; while the cock bird further differs in having the black cap at all seasons. There is likewise in India the Sylvia, or Curruca, affinis, which resembles our Lesser Whitethroat, excepting in being as large as our Common Whitethroat. The latter bird has lately turned up in the north-west of India; and the British Lesser Whitethroat is the only one of the group which extends its range eastward to Lower Bengal, where it occurs, however, only above the tideway of the rivers, upon the sandy soil in which the Baubul (Vachelia farmesiana) grows plentifully. There I have observed our familiar little friend in abundance during the winter months, but never upon the alluvion or mud soil; and the same remark applies to Hippolais nama. It has been suggested to me that there may be a race of ‘Blackcap" that visits Eastern

Europe, the males of which have a rufous-brown cap like the females. In our race of Blackcap the diversity of the sexes is very noticeable, even in nestlings.”

Captain Beavan, in the article before referred to, says: “Specimens of the Orphean Warbler, procured on the 22nd of October, had no trace whatever of a black head, and were considered by Colonel Tytler to be the young of the year; but in my opinion the state of the plumage was not sufficiently juvenile; and I think that the old birds adopt a different colouring according to the time of year, probably putting on the black head as the breeding season approaches.” To this observation the editor of the “Ibis.” appended the following note: “That this view of the case is correct there is probably little doubt (cf. Von der Mühle, ‘Monogr. Europ. Sylv.,' p. 48).”

From these observations it was surmised that the same might be the case with the Blackcap.

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O those who are unacquainted with the bird, the Garden Warbler may be best described as equal in size to the female Blackcap, resembling it in colour without the chestnut crown, having the belly pure white instead of greyish white, and the legs lighter in colour. It appears much later than the Blackcap, seldom arriving before the end of April. Both sexes are alike in outward appearance; but it has been

ascertained, by careful observers who have dissected the birds, that the males invariably arrive in this country before the females. Pennant, Montagu, and other old authors, called this bird the Greater Pettychaps, while they bestowed the name of Lesser Pettychaps—presumably from its resemblance in miniature—-upon the Chiffchaff. Throughout England the Garden Warbler appears to be pretty generally distributed. Mr. A. G. More, however, in his essay on the Distribution of Birds in Great Britain during the nesting season (“Ibis,” 1865, p. 25), speaks of it as scarce in Cornwall and Pembrokeshire, and absent from Wales. Mr. Rodd, on the other hand, characterizes the Garden Warbler as a summer visitant to East Cornwall, and says it “breeds annually in the woods at Trebartha, in North Hill, from whence specimens of its nest and eggs have been received.” He adds also that it has once been met with near Penzance;

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and that in the autumn of 1849 several speci

* See “List of British Birds, as a Guide to the Ornithology of Cornwall,” 2nd edition, 1869, p. 15.

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