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Indian Blackbird - BirdForum Opus

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Photo by svensky1962
Nilgiris, South India, March 2006
Turdus simillimus


A variable species:

  • Grey plumage (black in south and Sri Lanka) with blackish cap
  • Yellow to orange orbital skin and postorbital patch
  • Yellow to orange bill and legs

Females are duller and browner


Endemic to central and southern India and Sri Lanka


Five subspecies recognized:

  • T. s. simillimus in southwest India (Karnataka and western Tamil Nadu
  • T. s. bourdilloni in Kerala
  • T. s. nigropileus in the western Ghats (Gujarat to Karnataka and south-central India)
  • T. s. spencei in the eastern Ghats (Madhya Pradesh to Seshachalam Hills)
  • T. s. kinnisii in Sri Lanka

Formerly regarded conspecific with Eurasian Blackbird.


Moist deciduous and evergreen forest, sholas, dense scrub jungle and wooded ravines. In winter also in wooded gardens and plantations.



  1. Clements, JF. 2011. The Clements Checklist of Birds of the World. 6th ed., with updates to August 2011. Ithaca: Cornell Univ. Press. ISBN 978-0801445019. Spreadsheet available at http://www.birds.cornell.edu/clementschecklist/downloadable-clements-checklist
  2. Rasmussen, PC and JC Anderton. 2005. Birds of South Asia: The Ripley Guide. Barcelona: Lynx Edicions. ISBN 978-8487334672
  3. Avibase

Recommended Citation

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