Pied Bushchats

PiedchatsThe Pied Bushchat, Saxicola caprata, is a small passerine bird that was formerly classed as a member of the thrush family Turdidae, but is now more generally considered to be an Old World flycatcher, Muscicapidae. It, and similar small species in the family, are often called chats.

It is a resident breeder in tropical southern Asia from the Middle East through India and eastwards to Indonesia and Papua New Guinea.

It is found in open habitats like scrub, rough grassland and cultivation. It builds its nest in a hole in a wall or similar site, and lays 2-5 eggs.

The Pied Bushchat is slightly smaller than the Siberian Stonechat, Saxicola maura, although it has a similar dumpy structure and upright stance. The male is black except for a white rump, wing patch and lower belly. The males of the race S. c. bicolor have vermiculated dark grey upperparts.

The female has dark brown upperparts and rufous underparts and rump. She has no white wing patches. Juveniles are similar to females.

This species is insectivorous, and like other chats hunts from a prominent low perch.

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