The Striolated Bunting Emberiza striolata is a passerine bird in the bunting family Emberizidae, a group now separated by most modern authors from the finches, Fringillidae.
It is a resident breeder of dry country from northeast Africa (northwest Kenya and Ethiopia north to southern Egypt), east through southwest Asia to northwestern India. It breeds in remote wadis (not around human habitation like the related House Bunting), usually close to streams, laying 2-4 eggs in a nest on the ground or in a hole in it. Its natural food consists of insects when feeding young, and otherwise seeds.
It is 14cm long, similar in size to the House Bunting and smaller than the similarly plumaged Rock Bunting. The breeding male has a chestnut body, and grey head with darker streaking and a white supercilium and moustachial streak. The female's head has a brown tint to the grey, and more diffused streaking.
The Striolated Bunting has stronger facial striping and a paler belly than the north African House Bunting, which used to be considered conspecific as the subspecies E. striolata sahari. Birds in eastern Chad (E. striolata jebelmarrae) show some evidence of intergradation with House Bunting.
The breeding range of the bird in India has been noted in recent times to include more southerly locations such as near Saswad, Pune. The incubation period of the clutch of 3 eggs is noted as 14 days.
The song, given from a perch, is similar, but weaker than, that of the Chaffinch.
- ^ a b c Byers, C., Olsson, U., & Curson, J. (1995). Buntings and Sparrows. Pica Press ISBN 1-873403-19-4.
- ^ Collinson, M. (2006). Splitting headaches? Recent taxonomic changes affecting the British and Western Palearctic lists. British Birds 99 (6): 306-323.
- ^ Kirwan, Guy M. and Hadoram Shirihai (2007) Species limits in the House Bunting complex Dutch Birding 29(1): 1-19
- ^ Pande, S. Pawashe, A. & Joshi, V. 2006. Notes on the breeding of Striolated Bunting Emberiza striolata near Pune, Maharashtra. Indian Birds 2 (6): 153-156.
- BirdLife International (2004). Emberiza striolata. 2006 IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. IUCN 2006. Retrieved on 12 May 2006. Database compiled before species split of House Bunting, so conclusions may no longer apply.
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