Himalayan Shrike-babbler

Pteruthius ripleyi

The Himalayan shrike-babbler (Pteruthius aeralatus ripleyi) is a bird subspecies found in the western Himalayas that belongs to the shrike-babbler group. The genus was once considered to be an aberrant Old World babbler and placed in the family Timaliidae until molecular phylogenetic studies showed them to be closely related to the vireos of the New World, leading to their addition in the family Vireonidae. Males and females have distinctive plumages, with the males being all black about with a cinnamon-rufous tertial patch and a distinctive white stripe running from behind the eye. The underside is whitish with some pinkish buff on the flanks. Females have a greyish head, lack the white stripe and have the upperparts and wings with greens, yellow and chestnut. The subspecies is part of a cryptic species complex that was earlier considered as one species, white-browed shrike-babbler (P. flaviscapis in the broad sense) with several subspecies. Adult males have a black head and a greyish back. A white superciliary stripe begins just above and behind the eye, extending back down the sides of the nape. The throat and underside are whitish. The inner edges and tips of the primaries are white, the tertiaries (the three inner secondaries) are uniformly orange-chestnut, unlike dark chestnut in P. a. validirostris. The flanks have a hint of pale pink and grey. The grey on the back is lighter than the shade in validirostris. The bill is black and hooked at the tip. The adult female is olive brown above with the wing coverts edged grey. The secondaries are edged with olive green and the outer three primaries are tipped in white on the inner edge. The tertiaries are uniformly chestnut. Both males and females are paler than P. a. validirostris. The tail is black. The outer tail feathers are olive green and tipped in yellow with the inner webs black. The central tail feathers are olive green with a black tip. The underside is whitish buff as in the male but washed with grey from the middle of the abdomen to the vent.
Birda logo
Download Birda for free and join the community of curious everyday people connecting with the natural world
Birda logo
Download Birda for free and join the community
Connect with nature,
Find your flock
Copyright © 2023 Chirp Birding Ltd. All rights reserved.