Gould’s Shortwing Heteroxenicus stellatus
- Heteroxenicus: Greek word heteros- different; xenikos-
- Stellatus : Latin word “starry, starred, set with stars”
Distribution in India: Resident and summer visitor of Himalayas in India.
Size of 12–13 cm; Wt. of 19–23 g. It is small and dark, with long legs, narrow tail. The nominate race is chestnut above, slaty below with very fine grey-and-black scaling. It has a black face, small white arrows or stars on belly, flanks and rump. The bill is blackish; legs are brown. Both the sexes are similar. The juvenile is duller, with buffy-streaked rufous-tinged breast, rufous-tinged belly. Race fuscus is darker than nominate, slightly weaker chestnut above.
It is found in breeding season above tree-line in at 3300–4200 m in Himalayas. It winters in wooded valleys, boulder-strewn gullies and dank ravines with dense dwarf rhododendron, bamboo, fir and juniper, and with moss and fern undergrowth, down to 1500m
It eats Insects and seeds. It is largely terrestrial.
They breed in May–Jul in India.