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White-browed Fulvetta - BirdForum Opus

Alternative name: White-browed Tit-babbler; Hodgson's Fulvetta

Photo by zhangyong
Zhangmu, Tibet, China, January 2008
Fulvetta vinipectus

Alcippe vinipectus


Subspecies vinipectus
Photo by nick scarle
Phulchowki, Nepal, March 2017

A small 10.5-12cm (4-4¾ in) brown Fulvetta:

  • Broad white supercilium between dark crown and dark mask
  • Dark crown with blackish lateral stripes
  • White throat and breast
  • Black and grey slashes on rufescent wings

Juveniles are rustier above, have less distinctive lateral stripes and paler flanks.


Some subspecies have a spotted throat (eg ripponi and valentinae) and darker masks or crowns.


Found in the Himalayas from North West India (Himachal Pradesh) over Nepal and Bhutan to North East India and in adjacent Tibet. Further east also in Burma, South China (Yunnan and Sichuan) and North Vietnam.
Common in most parts of its range.1



Clements and others1, 2 accept eight subspecies:

  • F. v. kangrae in the western Himalayas
  • F. v. vinipectus in Nepal and adjacent Tibet
  • F. v. chumbiensis from East Nepal to Bhutan
  • F. v. austeni in North East India and adjacent North Burma
  • F. v. ripponi in the Chin Hills in Burma
  • F. v. perstirata from extreme North East India over Kachin State (Burma) to South China (Yunnan)
  • F. v. valentinae in North Vietnam
  • F. v. bieti in South China (Sichuan, Yunnan)

Like other Fulvettas this species was formerly placed in Alcippe.1


Found above 2300m in the Himalayas (2000m in China) in low scrub, juniper forest, dwarf willow forest, birch forest, rhododendron, pine or spruce forest and stunted oak forest.



Feeds almost exclusively on insects. Takes sometimes also berries and seeds.
Usually seen in groups of up to 20 birds outside the breeding season, sometimes together with other species.


Breeding season from April to July in the Himalayas, May to June in China. The nest is a bulky, deep cup made of dry grasses, bamboo leaves, moss, rootlets, fibres and bark. It's placed in a bush or bamboo, some 0.9 - 2m above the ground. Lays 2 - 3 eggs.


Resident species with some altitudinal movement.1


  1. 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
  2. Clements, J. F., T. S. Schulenberg, M. J. Iliff, D. Roberson, T. A. Fredericks, B. L. Sullivan, and C. L. Wood. 2016. The eBird/Clements checklist of birds of the world: v2016, with updates to August 2016. Downloaded from http://www.birds.cornell.edu/clementschecklist/download/

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