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Green-billed Malkoha - BirdForum Opus

Alternative names: Greater Green-billed Malkoha, Large Green-billed Malkoha

Nominate subspecies
Photo by Chiranjib18
Teliagaon, Assam, India, May 2017
Phaenicophaeus tristis

Rhopodytes tristis


Photo by appendiculata191
Phu Khiao Wildlife Reserve, Thailand, February 2011

50cm (19¾ in)

  • Dark grey upperparts with green gloss
  • Oily green wings and tail
  • Very long tail with broad white tips
  • Grey to blackish lower belly
  • Red bare skin around eye
  • Pale green bill

Sexes similar. Juveniles have shorter tails.


Found from the Himalayas of northern India east through Nepal, Sikkim, Bhutan and northeast India to Bangladesh, Burma, Thailand, Southern China (Yunnan), Hainan and south to Indochina, Malaysia to Sumatra and on Kangean Island.
Common or very common in most of its range.



Subspecies longicaudatus
Photo by arjacee
Khao Yai National Park, Thailand

There are 6 subspecies[1]:

  • P. t. tristis:
  • P. t. saliens:
  • P. t. hainanus:
  • Hainan Island (southern China)
  • P. t. longicaudatus:
  • P. t. elongatus:
  • P. t. kangeangensis :
  • Kangean Islands (Java Sea)


Evergreen forest, secondary growth.
Occurs from lowlands to hill, locally up to 1800m.



Feeds on insects. Takes also lizards.
Forages in thickets and dense vegetation.


Breeding season April to August in India, March to September in Burma and January to March in Malaysia. The nest is a small platform made of twigs and green leaves. It's placed in the middle of a small tree. Lays 2 to 4 eggs. Both sexes incubate.


A resident species.


  1. 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/
  2. Del Hoyo, J, A Elliot, and J Sargatal, eds. 1997. Handbook of the Birds of the World. Volume 4: Sandgrouse to Cuckoos. Barcelona: Lynx Edicions. ISBN 978-8487334221

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