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Chin Hills Wren-Babbler - BirdForum Opus

Photo by martinuk
Nat Ma Taung (Mount Victoria), Chin State, Myanmar, February 2011
Spelaeornis oatesi


A small (10cm) dark brown Wren-Babbler.

  • Prominent white shaft-streaks on flanks
  • Longer tailed than Tawny-breasted Wren-Babbler
  • Darker above than Tawny-breasted Wren-Babbler, browner below with fine black flecks below throat
  • Males with broad white throat through centre of belly
  • Female more rufous-chestnut than male


Found in Mizoram (E India) and the Chin Hills of northern Burma.
Has a very small range.


This is a monotypic species.
It was formerly considered conspecific with Pale-throated Wren-Babbler, Grey-bellied Wren-Babbler and Naga Wren-Babbler.


Montane broadleaf forest with thick undergrowth.1


Feeds on ants, small beetles and various other insects.
Very active species, usually foraging close to the ground, but not as exclusively ground-dwelling like the Pnoepyga Wren-Babblers.
Breeds from March to June in Burma, building an oval doom. Lays 3 whitish eggs.


  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, 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
  3. Rasmussen, P. C. and Anderton, J. C. 2005. Birds of South Asia. The Ripley Guide. Washington and Barcelona. Smithsonian Institute and Lynx Edicions. ISBN 84-87334-67-9

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