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Spot-breasted Parrotbill - BirdForum Opus

Alternative names: White-throated Parrotbill; Spotted-breasted Parrotbill; Rufous-headed Parrotbill

Photo by Ayuwat J
Doi Angkang, Chiangmai, Thailand, January 2007
Paradoxornis guttaticollis


18 - 22cm. A large parrotbill.

  • Rufous crown and nape
  • Rufescent-brown upperparts
  • White face with large black ear-patch
  • Pointed blackish spots and streaks on throat and upper breast
  • Buff to pale buff underparts
  • Deep yellow bill
Photo by Peter Ericsson
Doi Angkang, Chiangmai, Thailand, December 2006

Sexes similar, juveniles are paler above and more rufescent. They also have weaker throat spots.

Similar species

Similar to Black-breasted Parrotbill but note white throat and pale underparts. Also not in the same habitat.


From northeast India and northeast Bangladesh over northern Burma, northwest Thailand, north Laos and north Vietnam to much of south China (Gansu and Shaanxi to Sichuan and Yunnan, east through Guizhou, Guangxi and Guangdong to Fujian).
Widespread and fairly common in its range.


This is a monotypic species[1].
A proposed race from Yunnan (China), gongshanensis, is usually not accepted.
Has been treated conspecific with Black-breasted Parrotbill.


Grass and scrub, bamboo and abandonend plantations. Found at 900 - 2100m in India, 350 - 3250m in China.


Usually seen in small groups, sometimes together with other species like Rufous-necked Laughingthrush or Barwings.
Resident species with some minor altitudinal movements recorded.


Feeds on insects and their larvae, berries and seeds.


Breeding season from April to July. The nest is a compact deep cup-shaped structure, made of grasses and bamboo leaves. It's placed around 1m above the ground in reeds or bamboo clump. Lays 2 - 4 eggs.


Recorded by china guy, Sichuan, China, August 2011


  1. Clements, JF. 2010. The Clements Checklist of Birds of the World. 6th ed., with updates to December 2010. Ithaca: Cornell Univ. Press. ISBN 978-0801445019. Spreadsheet available at http://www.birds.cornell.edu/clementschecklist/Clements%206.5.xls/view
  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
  3. Rasmussen, PC and JC Anderton. 2005. Birds of South Asia: The Ripley Guide. Barcelona: Lynx Edicions. ISBN 978-8487334672

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