(Lanius rufus, Linn.—La Pie-gričche rousse, Buff.)
UNDER this title we have introduced the figure of a Shrike which we received from Mr William Proctor, of Auton Stile, Durham. It was shot by him, expressly for this work, on the 10th September, 1824. The length seven inches; breadth eleven; weight rather exceeding an ounce. The bill is dark brown, tinged with lead colour, distinctly notched, and beset with bristles at the base; irides dark hazel; brow dull light brown; the head and upper parts of the body reddish or rusty brown; each feather fringed with a lighter colour, and barred in the middle with black curved or waved lines; the auriculars are deeper brown, and spotted or barred with black; the lower part of the back and rump are of a paler shade than the back; the tail coverts are rusty red, the tail is nearly the same colour; the two middle feathers plain, the two outer ones edged with dull white; the rest have a black spot near the ends, and are tipped with white; the greater coverts and secondaries are deep brown, black in the middle, with pale edges, and tips white; the primaries are much the same, but of a darker cast; the under parts are sullied white, delicately barred on the breast and sides, with dark brown; the thighs mottled the same; the legs dark lead blue. The gizzard was full of the remains of insects, such as the legs of earwigs and beetles.
There has been much difference of opinion, since the time of Edwards, respecting the Woodchat. Buffon supposes it a variety of the Red-backed Shrike. Pennant, Latham, and Montagu give it a place as a distinct species; so does Temminck, but this country is not mentioned by him as one of its habitats, and we understand Mr Selby excludes it from our Fauna, no instance of its capture or appearance in Britain being upon record. We give the figure therefore, rather with the view of assisting naturalists, than of offering any decided opinion of our own.
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