Blue-Crowned Laughing Thrush

Blue-Crowned Laughing Thrush Pterorhinus courtoisi

Type of Animal:

Forests, forest edges, forest patches, bushy areas adjacent to forests, woodlands, shrub/grass plots, trees/shrubs near human habitation, vegetable plots, vegetable fields, vegetable gardens, tea gardens, grasslands, shrub areas along riverbanks, scattered tree areas, bamboo stands, farmland, scrubland, tree areas near rivers

Jiangxi province of China. Formerly found in Yunnan as well.

Brown backed yellow-bellied/throated bird w/ blue to pale gray silver-lined crown & black bandit’s mask

Insects, seeds, berries, fruit

Status in Wild:
Critically Endangered

Breeding in zoos, wildlife centers, & aviculture. Population monitoring in restricted range. Export of these birds banned in 1998. Establishment of protected areas.

Flocks of up to 40 birds. Breed colonially & cooperatively.

Additional Info:

Male: Cock
Female: Hen
Young: Chick
Group: Flock

1.76 oz

2 weeks

Life Span:
12 years in wild, 15 years in captivity

9.05-9.84 in

Body Length:
9.05-9.84 in

Tail Length:
4 in

Main predators of adults are civets & snakes. Smaller snakes & magpies prey on chicks.

Critically endangered due to habitat loss, restricted range, bird trade, deforestation, agriculture, development, pathogens, & low genetic diversity.

They were once considered a subspecies of the Yellow-Throated Laughing Thrush.

Flock members communicate w/ each other w/ noisy high-pitched churrs as well as squeals, buzzes, & their signature laughing call.

They make open cup-shaped nests made of twigs & grasses, lined w/ dry grasses, in trees 13-49 ft above ground.

3-5 eggs laid in small open cup-shaped nests.

Older siblings help in care of younger siblings.

Forage on ground as well in bushes & trees.

Chicks fledge at 16 days but stay w/ parents for longer.

Breed from April-July.

Maturity reached at 10-12 months old.

Active during the day (diurnal).

These birds tend to be rather inquisitive.

Fun Fact(s):
Also called Courtois’s Laughingbird, in honor of French missionary Frederic Courtois, who lived in China from 1901 until death in 1928. He was very interested in botany & ornithology.

There may only be 200-300 of these birds left in the wild. Fortunately, captive population is increasing. Wild population may be increasing too.

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