Black-throated robin

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For the Chinese bird Luscinia obscura, see Blackthroat
Black-throated robin
Illustration by Keulemans, 1879
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Class: Aves
Order: Passeriformes
Family: Petroicidae
Genus: Poecilodryas
Species: P. albonotata
Binomial name
Poecilodryas albonotata
(Salvadori, 1875)
  • Plesiodryas albonotata

The black-throated robin (Poecilodryas albonotata) is a species of bird in the family Petroicidae. It is found on the island of New Guinea. Its natural habitat is subtropical or tropical moist montane forests at 1,150–2,750 metres above sea-level.

Described by Gregory Mathews in 1920, the black-throated robin is a member of the Australasian robin family Petroicidae. Its genus name is derived from the Ancient Greek words poikilos "little" and dryas "dryad", and the species name albonotata is derived from the Latin words albus "white" and notata "marked". Sibley and Ahlquist's DNA-DNA hybridisation studies placed this group in a Corvida parvorder comprising many tropical and Australian passerines including pardalotes, fairy-wrens, honeyeaters and crows.[2] However, subsequent molecular research (and current consensus) places the robins as a very early offshoot of the Passerida (or "advanced" songbirds) within the songbird lineage.[3]


Measuring 18 to 19 cm (7.1 to 7.5 in), the black-throated robin has a grey-black face, throat and upper breast with a grey crown and nape, and a white diagonal mark on the neck. The upperparts are blue-grey, and the underparts grey to white over the abdomen and under the tail coverts. The bill and legs are black, and the eyes are dark brown. The plumage is reminiscent of a cuckoo-shrike but the white neck marking is diagnostic.[4]

The black-throated robin is found predominantly in rainforests along the central highlands of New Guinea, from the Bird's Head Peninsula in the west to the Huon Peninsula in the east, at altitudes from 1,800 to 2,750 m (5,900 to 9,000 ft). Within the rainforest, it is found singly in the understory or on the ground. It is insectivorous, and hunts by gleaning.[4]


  1. ^ BirdLife International (2012). "Poecilodryas albonotata". IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Version 2013.2. International Union for Conservation of Nature. Retrieved 26 November 2013. 
  2. ^ Sibley CG, Ahlquist JE (1990). Phylogeny and Classification of Birds: A Study in Molecular Evolution. New Haven, CT: Yale University Press. pp. 603, 610–27. ISBN 0-300-04085-7. 
  3. ^ Barker, F. Keith; Cibois, Alice; Schikler, Peter A.; Feinstein, Julie & Cracraft, Joel (2004). "Phylogeny and diversification of the largest avian radiation" (PDF). PNAS. 101 (30): 11040–45. doi:10.1073/pnas.0401892101. PMC 503738Freely accessible. PMID 15263073. Retrieved 14 August 2008. 
  4. ^ a b Coates, Brian J. (1990). The Birds of Papua New Guinea. Volume II. Queensland: Dove Publications. p. 192. ISBN 978-0-9590257-1-2. OCLC 153651608. 

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