Bugun Liocichla

A Bugun Liocichla

The Bugun Liocichla (Liocichla bugunorum) is a passerine bird species from the Old World Babbler family, and is closely related to the Grey-faced Liocichla. It was first seen in 1995, though it was only recorded as a new species in 2006 by an amateur bird watcher named Ramana Athreya. No type specimen was taken, as the bird was too rare to risk killing one. It is thought to be an endangered species, with a rough population of only fourteen members. It's habitat is threatened by commercial development.


The Bugun Liocichla is a small babbler (22 cm) with olive-grey plumage and a black cap. The face is marked with prominent orange-yellow lores, and the wings have yellow, red and white patches. The tail is black with crimson coloured undertail coverts and red tips. The feet are pink and the bill is black at the face fading to pale white. A second duller individual was mist netted, which was probably the female.


For a "spectacular bird" with distinctive calls to have been overlooked until 1995 suggests that the species is not common. Only three breeding pairs are currently known. While the species is capable of living in degraded forests, its small population is considered threatened, especially in the light of plans to build a highway through an area thought to be its primary habitat.