• Welcome to BirdForum, the internet's largest birding community with thousands of members from all over the world. The forums are dedicated to wild birds, birding, binoculars and equipment and all that goes with it.

    Please register for an account to take part in the discussions in the forum, post your pictures in the gallery and more.
ZEISS DTI thermal imaging cameras. For more discoveries at night, and during the day.

Grey-eyed Bulbul - BirdForum Opus

Photo by tombac
Kaeng Krachan, Thailand
Iole propinqua


17-19 cm (6¾-7½ in). A slim, dull, small-headed bulbul, often showing a slightly frizzy crest.

  • Olive-rufous crown to hindneck
  • Smoky grey lores to above eye, upper face and ear-coverts
  • Olive-brown mantle to rump
  • Dark rufous-brown uppertail-coverts
  • Olive-brown upperwing with a slight bronzy sheen
  • Dark rufous-brown tail
  • Dull white chin and throat with slightly elongated feathers
  • Off-white mid-breast with some yellowish fringing
  • Ashy olive-brown breast side and flanks, forming a distinctive patch
  • Cream belly, tinged olive-brown
  • Variable tawny-brown undertail-coverts
  • Clear grey to white eye with contrasting blackish eyelid rim

Sexes similar.
Juveniles are duller than adults and have a light brown eye.


  • aquilonis more yellow below (looking similar to subspecies myitkyinensis of Olive Bulbul)
  • simulator has less green upperparts and much less yellow below (best told apart from Olive Bulbul by more olive wings, greyer supercilium and more rufescent undertail-coverts)
  • innectens with dark olive green upperparts
  • lekhakuni with brownish-olive upperparts and greyer underparts
  • cinnamomeoventris without yellow tones on underparts


Cambodia, China, Laos, Burma, Thailand, and Vietnam.
Locally fairly common. Probably often overlooked due to identification problems.


Five subspecies recognized:

cinnamomeoventris and lekhakuni are now placed in Olive Bulbul, myitkyinensis was formerly placed in Olive Bulbul.


Found in evergreen and mixed deciduous forest and forest edges. Also in secondary forest, often with major bamboo or vine component. Often around clearings and along roads, tracks and rivers.
Occurs from lowlands up to 1000 m, sometimes higher.


A relatively shy and unobtrusive species.


Feeds mainly on fruit and insects, but no detailed information. Usually foraging solitary or in pairs, sometimes in groups in canopy and middle storey.


Breeds in April in northern Thailand. No other information.


Presumably a resident species.


  1. Clements, J. F., T. S. Schulenberg, M. J. Iliff, D. Roberson, T. A. Fredericks, B. L. Sullivan, and C. L. Wood. 2017. The eBird/Clements checklist of birds of the world: v2017, with updates to August 2017. Downloaded from http://www.birds.cornell.edu/clementschecklist/download/
  2. Del Hoyo, J, A Elliot, and D Christie, eds. 2005. Handbook of the Birds of the World. Volume 10: Cuckoo-Shrikes to Thrushes. Barcelona: Lynx Edicions. ISBN 978-8487334726

Recommended Citation

External Links