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Buff-chested Babbler - BirdForum Opus

Cyanoderma ambiguum

Stachyris ambigua


12 cm. Very similar to Rufous-capped Babbler (with range overlap) and Rufous-fronted Babbler (only little range overlap):

Sexes similar. Juveniles with paler crown and very much like juveniles of Rufous-capped Babbler.


Found from north and east India to Bhutan, east Bangladesh, Burma, probably China (Yunnan), north Thailand, Laos and north Vietnam.
Co-occurence with Rufous-fronted Babbler reported in Burma and Thailand, but evidence unclear.


There are 4 subspecies:

Often considered conspecific with Rufous-fronted Babbler.
Like other former Stachyris-Babblers this species was sometimes placed in the genus Stachyridopsis or in Stachyris.


Dense undergrowth and bamboo thickets in open forest and forest clearings. Also jungle with grass in open forest, secondary growth and scrub in abandoned clearings. Found at 120 - 1200m in the Indian Subcontinent and up to 2100m in Indochina.


Feeds on insects, may sometimes take also berries.
During breeding season in pairs, outside in small groups of up to six birds, often with other species. Forages in low undergrowth, close to the ground.
Breeding season from February to August. The nest is a dome, sometimes a semi-dome or a deep cup made of bamboo and grasses. It's placed within 1 m from the ground in bambo clump or among stems of palms. Lays 3 - 5 eggs. Brood parasitism by Large Hawk-Cuckoo reported.
Resident species with some local movements.


  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. 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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