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Pied Triller - BirdForum Opus

Photo by Karim Madoya
Tg Aru KBU, Malaysia, October 2005
Lalage nigra


16,5 to 18 cm.


Photo by SeeToh
Lorong Halus, Singapore, September 2015
  • Glossy black forehead, crown, nape, mantle and scapulars
  • Broad white supercilium
  • Black band from lores to nape, white rest of head
  • Black wings with big white patch and white fringes
  • White underparts with grey wash on breast
  • Grey rump and uppertail-coverts, black tail


  • Greyish brown instead of black plumage parts
  • Washed buffish underparts with narrow dark scales


  • Similar to female but with browner upperparts and blackish shaft streaks on side of throat, breast and undertail-coverts

Similar species

White-rumped Triller has a white rump and white uppertail-coverts.


Malay Peninsula, Sumatra, Java, Borneo and Philippines. Also on Nicobar Islands.
Common in parts of its range. davisoni uncommon to rare.


Three subspecies recognized:

Closely related to White-rumped Triller and White-shouldered Triller and the three may form a superspecies.


Open country, gardens in towns, and open scrub in the lowlands. Often around large trees.
Occurs from lowlands up to 1000 m, recorded up to 1550 in Peninsular Malaysia.



Feeds on arthropods, mainly caterpillars. Takes also some fruit.
Forages singly, in pairs or small flocks, in all levels of trees and also in bushes and hedgerows. Also seen hunting on ground.


Breeding season February to August in Malay Peninsula, May to June in Philippines and February to April and June to August in Sumatra. The nest is an open cup made of grass, casuarina needles and fibre. It's placed on a horizontal branch 3 to 9 m above the ground. Lays 2 to 3 eggs. Both parents feed the young.


A resident species. Seasonal changes in abudance noted in Singapore suggest some migration or local dispersal.


  1. Clements, J. F., T. S. Schulenberg, M. J. Iliff, D. Roberson, T. A. Fredericks, B. L. Sullivan, and C. L. Wood. 2015. The eBird/Clements checklist of birds of the world: v2015, with updates to August 2015. Downloaded from http://www.birds.cornell.edu/clementschecklist/download/
  2. Handbook of the Birds of the World Alive (retrieved May 2016)

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