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Orange-headed Thrush

From Opus

Alternative name: Orange-headed Ground-Thrush

Male, race innotataPhoto by jarayKhao Yai National Park, Thailand.
Male, race innotata
Photo by jaray
Khao Yai National Park, Thailand.
Geokichla citrina

Zoothera citrina

Includes the White-headed Ground Thrush (Geokichla albogularis); not to be confused with the White-throated Thrush from the Americas.


[edit] Identification

Nominate subspecies MalePhoto by Alok TewariJim Corbett National Park, Uttarakhand, India, June-2016
Nominate subspecies Male
Photo by Alok Tewari
Jim Corbett National Park, Uttarakhand, India, June-2016

Total length 20-23 cm (8-9 in).
Males of this small thrush have uniform grey upperparts and orange head and underparts. Females and sub-adults have olive-brown upperparts and tail.
Juveniles of all races have dark facial lines and duller upperparts and underparts with some streaking/mottling.

[edit] Variations

The racial variation is striking (see taxonomy), especially in the presence/absence of a white wing-bar and the facial features. Some races have a uniform orange head, some have a slightly duller throat and face with two vertical dark lines (one below the eye and a second on the auriculars), while other have a white face and throat with or without two vertical dark facial lines.

[edit] Distribution

Found in well-wooded areas of the Indian subcontinent, southern China, mainland southeast Asia, northern Borneo, Java and Bali.

There are also a few records of migrants from Sumatra. Often local and scarse, but commoner in parts of the India.

Tropical races are generally resident, but races that breed in colder regions (e.g. the Himalayas and parts of China) are migratory and winter further south.

[edit] Taxonomy

Formerly placed in genus Zoothera.

Male race cyanotaPhoto by Pradyumna MohanKarnataka, India
Male race cyanota
Photo by Pradyumna Mohan
Karnataka, India

[edit] Subspecies

There are 12 subspecies[1]:

It has been suggested that some taxa should be considered separate species. Especially albogularis and andamanensis (from the Nicobar and Andaman Islands), the only white-faced and -throated taxa with faint or no vertical dark facial lines, are regularly considered a separate species; the White-throated Ground Thrush (G. albogularis with race andamanensis). Other separations have been suggested, but the variation is confusing with similar-looking races often found far from each other.

[edit] Habitat

Female race melliPhoto by anonymous_guyLamma Island, Hong Kong
Female race melli
Photo by anonymous_guy
Lamma Island, Hong Kong

Found in forest, plantations and secondary growth with some thickets.

[edit] Behaviour

Like most Zoothera and Geokichla thrushes it can be quite secretive. They do not form flocks.

[edit] Diet

At least partially Crepuscular. It is Omnivorous, eating a wide range of insects, earthworms, termites, leeches, slugs, snails and fruit, berries and grass seed.

[edit] Breeding

They nest in trees.

[edit] References

  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
  2. Handbook of the Birds of the World Alive (retrieved June 2016)
  3. BF Member observations

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