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Sumatran Drongo

From Opus

Photo by James EatonBukit Tapan, Sumatra, Indonesia, August 2011
Photo by James Eaton
Bukit Tapan, Sumatra, Indonesia, August 2011
Dicrurus sumatranus


[edit] Identification

29cm. A distinctive drongo:

  • Tail nearly square-ended, outer rectrices straight or very slightly curving outwards
  • Rather short bill
  • Black plumage with deep ultramarine-blue gloss
  • Small feathers at base of bill cover about two-third of lenght of bill
  • Exaggerated rictal bristles, projecting nearly as far as tip of bill
  • Red eye

Sexes similar, females are smaller. Juveniles undescribed.

[edit] Distribution

Endemic to the mountains of Sumatra (Indonesia).
Widespread and locally common.

[edit] Taxonomy

Two subspecies recongized:

  • D. s. sumatranus in Batak Highlands and Barisan Range (from Aceh to Mount Kaba)
  • D. s. viridinitens on Mentawai Islands, off western Sumatra

Has been considered conspecific with Hair-crested Drongo and belongs to a superspecies with Hair-crested Drongo, Sulawesi Drongo, Wallacean Drongo, Balicassiao, Spangled Drongo and Ribbon-tailed Drongo.

[edit] Habitat

Submontane and lower montane primary forest or tall secondary forest. Occurs up to 800m, possibly up to 1500m.

[edit] Behaviour

Feeds on insects. Sallies from a perch and hawks its prey in air. Often seen on vertical trunk with head up and tail pressed against bark like a woodpecker. Then it ascends in flitting hops to take ants.
Commonly in mixed-species flocks.
Few data about breeding. One bird was seen in early April feeding two nestling.
A resident species.

[edit] References

  1. Clements, JF. 2009. The Clements Checklist of Birds of the World. 6th ed., with updates to December 2009. Ithaca: Cornell Univ. Press. ISBN 978-0801445019.
  2. Del Hoyo, J, A Elliott, and D Christie, eds. 2009. Handbook of the Birds of the World. Volume 14: Bush-shrikes to Old World Sparrows. Barcelona: Lynx Edicions. ISBN 978-8496553507

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