Red-billed Leiothrix

Leiothrix lutea




Old World Passerines (Leiothrichidae)

Code 4


Code 6



Egg Color:

Pale blue marked with red-brown.

Number of Eggs:

1 - 4

Incubation Days:


Egg Incubator:


Nest Location:

Nest is 2 to 10 feet above ground in dense vegetation.

Nest Material:

Leaves, dried grasses, sometimes animal hair.





Red-billed Leiothrix: Crown, nape and back are olive-green; lores, eye ring and supraloral stripe are cream to dull yellow. Bright yellow-orange throat, yellow chin; pale yellow underparts; olive-brown wings have yellow-orange patch; bright red bill. Female is slightly smaller than male, more green-olive crown, grayer ear coverts, smaller and duller red wing patches. Juvenile similar to female, has paler bill, crown is same color as mantle, olive-gray underparts, white center, dull red and yellow wing patches, yellow throat and rust breast band.

Range and Habitat

Red-billed Leiothrix: Introduced to Kauai in 1918, to other islands in the 1920s-1930s. May no longer exist on Kauai, populations fluctuate on other islands. Found in native and exotic forests from ocean level to mountain tops. Native to Southeast Asia, Himalayan region of India, and southern China.

Breeding and Nesting

Red-billed Leiothrix: One to four pale blue eggs marked with red-brown at the larger end are laid in a pendant nest. It is built low in dense underbrush and made of lichen, leaves, and moss. Incubation lasts for 14 days and is primarily done by the female. Chicks fledge 10 to 12 days after hatching.

Foraging and Feeding

Red-billed Leiothrix: They feed mostly on fruits, including strawberry guava, overripe papaya and thimbleberry; they also eat insects. Adults consume approximately equal amounts of fruit and invertebrates. They forage on the ground, and almost always forage in the lower strata of vegetation, typically plucking fruit or gleaning and probing in foliage. They also glean and probe twigs and dead wood.


Red-billed Leiothrix: Males sing complex, long songs during breeding season. Year-round uses a shorter, simple song. Warbling and melodious song similar to Red-whiskered Bulbul. Both sexes use unique,short calls to stay together. When feeding utters "pu pu pu pu" or "pe pe pe pa". A harsh, loud chatter call is used when there are humans or other birds near their nest. Has a soft, sad whistle.

Similar Species

Red-billed Leiothrix: Not likely to be confused with any other species.


Belly, undertail coverts, chest, flanks, and foreneck.

The upper front part of a bird.
The crown is the top part of the birds head.
Eye ringX
The circle around the eye formed of feathers that are a different color from the rest of the face.
The upper surface of the back and wings covered with shorter feathers.
Also called the hindneck or collar, it is the back of the neck where the head joins the body.
Parts of a Standing bird X
Head Feathers and Markings X
Parts of a Flying bird X