Male: jet-black, spotted and marked white and fulvous; white cheeks; chestnut collar, belly and under tail-coverts. Female: browner where male is black; rufous nuchal patch; no white cheeks or chestnut collar. Solitary or small parties in high grass and edges of canals; emerges in the open in the early mornings; sometimes cocks tail.
high grass, cultivation; prefers wetter areas along canals and rivers.
grain, seeds, tubers, fallen berries, insects.
resident; N subcontinent, along foothills; south to N Gujarat and C Madhya Pradesh; an eastern race melanotus occurs east of Nepal in Duars; up to about 2,000m.
loud 3- to 6-note crow of the cock