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White-bellied Whistler - BirdForum Opus

(Redirected from Pachycephala leucogastra)

Alternative name: Rossel Island Whistler (meeki)

Pachycephala leucogastra


14 - 15cm.

  • Black crown, hindneck, face and broad band on upper breast
  • White chin and throat
  • Brownish-grey to grey upperparts (darker in meeki)
  • Dark brown upperwing and tail
  • White rest of underparts, sometimes with grey sides
  • Red-brown eye
  • Black bill


  • Grey head and breastband
  • Female of meeki darker grey and creamy underparts

Juveniles with rufous patches on head and rufous wings.


Patchily distributed in New Guinea including Louisiade Archipelago off southeast New Guinea.
Small range but locally common.


Two subspecies recognized:

  • P. l. leucogastra in coastal southeast New Guinea (from Port Moresby northwest to Hall Sound)
  • P. l. meeki on Rossel Island in Louisiade Archipelago

Similar birds are reported from Wewak and Lumia and East Sepik Province but their subspecies is not known.
Forms a superspecies with Drab Whistler, Rufous Whistler, Black-headed Whistler and Wallacean Whistler and has been considered conspecific with some of them. Hybrids with Black-headed Whistler recorded.


Eucalypt savanna in hills, mangrove forests and rubber plantations. Found from sea-level to 1200m.


Feeds on insects.
Breeding reported in February and June. The nest is a cup made of vegetable material. It's placed about 10 - 20m above the ground in a tree fork or much lower in mangroves. No other information.
Resident species.


  1. Clements, JF. 2008. The Clements Checklist of Birds of the World. 6th ed., with updates to December 2008. Ithaca: Cornell Univ. Press. ISBN 978-0801445019.
  2. Del Hoyo, J, A Elliott, and D Christie, eds. 2007. Handbook of the Birds of the World. Volume 12: Picathartes to Tits and Chickadees. Barcelona: Lynx Edicions. ISBN 978-8496553422

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