Black-browed babbler

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Black-browed babbler
Turnaround video of specimen RMNH 89412, Naturalis Biodiversity Center
Scientific classification edit
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Class: Aves
Order: Passeriformes
Family: Pellorneidae
Genus: Malacocincla
M. perspicillata
Binomial name
Malacocincla perspicillata
(Bonaparte, 1850)
  • Cacopitta (Myiothera) perspicillata
    Bonaparte, 1850
  • Trichastoma perspicillatum
    Collar & Andrew, 1988

The black-browed babbler (Malacocincla perspicillata) is a songbird species in the family Pellorneidae. The species is endemic to Borneo.[2] Only a single specimen, collected in the nineteenth century was known, until the bird was rediscovered in Borneo during 2020.


The natural habitat of M. perspicillata is subtropical or tropical moist lowland forests, at altitudes of 200–1,170 m (660–3,840 ft).[1]

Its rediscovery in 2020 solidified the belief that the bird is from southeast Borneo.[3]

Conservation status[edit]

The conservation status of M. perspicillata is insufficiently known. Formerly, it was classified as Vulnerable by the IUCN.[4] But new research has shown the lack of reliable information, while on the other hand, some conjectural presumptions have been gleaned from the specimen, opening up new lines of research. Consequently, its status was changed to Data Deficient in 2008.[5] The songbird is threatened by agriculture, logging allowed within protected areas, plantations for rubber and palm oil, and drought fires. Within the next few years, there is risk of near complete loss of dryland lowland forest in Kalimantan.


In October 2020, M. perspicillata was rediscovered in South Kalimantan by two local men, Muhammad Suranto and Muhammad Rizky Fauzan, 170 years after the last confirmed sighting.[6]

The rediscovered bird next to a 5.000 rupiah note.


  1. ^ a b BirdLife International (2016). "Black-browed Babbler: Malacocincla perspicillata". IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. 2016: e.T22715827A94470581. doi:10.2305/IUCN.UK.2016-3.RLTS.T22715827A94470581.en. Retrieved 16 January 2021.
  2. ^ Phillipps, Quentin; Phillipps, Karen (2011). Phillipps' Field Guide to the Birds of Borneo. Oxford, UK: John Beaufoy Publishing. ISBN 978-1-906780-56-2.
  3. ^
  4. ^ BLI (2006)
  5. ^ BLI (2008)
  6. ^ Akbar, P.G.; Nugroho, T.W.; Suranto, M.; Fauzan, M.R.; Ferdiansyah, D.; Trisiyanto, J.S.; Yong, D.L. (2021). "Missing for 170 years—the rediscovery of Black-browed Babbler Malacocincla perspicillata on Borneo" (PDF). BirdingASIA 34: 13–14. Oriental Bird Club. Retrieved 25 February 2021.


External links[edit]

Further reading[edit]

  • Bonaparte CL (1850). Conspectus Generum Avium. Tom. I. [Volume I]. Leiden: E.J. Brill. 543 pp. (Cacopitta (Myothera) perspicillata, new species, p. 257). (in Latin).