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White-speckled Laughingthrush Garrulax bieti
BirdLife is updating this factsheet for the 2016 Red List
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This species qualifies as Vulnerable as it has a small, declining and severely fragmented population, with destruction of temperate and subalpine forest continuing throughout its range through logging and conversion to agriculture.

Taxonomic source(s)
Sibley, C. G.; Monroe, B. L. 1990. Distribution and taxonomy of birds of the world. Yale University Press, New Haven, USA.

25.5 cm. Warm brown laughingthrush. White facial patch and black-and-white speckling on upperparts and wing-coverts. Blackish-brown throat and upper breast, the latter with white speckling. Similar spp. Barred Laughingthrush G. lunulatus has barred, pale buff markings on upperparts and wing-coverts and paler brown underparts. Voice Song a loud, clear, descending wi wi-wi-wuu, less descending wi ch'wi wi ch'wu and wi chiu-wu wu-wu-wi which rises towards end. In all cases, wi notes are louder and rising and phrases are repeated 2-3 times.

Distribution and population
Garrulax bieti is endemic to China, where it is known from the mountains of north-west Yunnan and south-west Sichuan. Its population and range are poorly known, but it can occur at quite high densities in suitable habitat; e.g. a 2008 visit to Muli County, Sichuan, reported as many as six territories in one day in a 1 km long valley of primary mixed forest with dense bamboo undergrowth (Anderson and Dymond 2008). However, the paucity of records suggests that it probably has a highly localised distribution and a small population, which is likely to be declining given the threats to its habitat.

Population justification
The population is estimated to number 2,500-9,999 mature individuals, based on a detailed analysis in BirdLife International (2001), who concluded that this species may have a small total population, i.e. fewer than 10,000 individuals. This estimate equates to 3,750-14,999 individuals, rounded here to 3,500-15,000 individuals.

Trend justification
A moderate and continuing population decline is suspected to be occurring, as habitat degradation is known to be continuing across the species's range.

Its habitats and altitudinal range are little-known. It appears to occur mainly in undisturbed forest, including mixed forest, thickets, spruce-fir, and fir-rhododendron forest, particularly those with dense bamboo understorey, in the upper temperate and subalpine zone from 2,500-4,270 m, and possibly as high as 4,570 m. A 2008 visit to Muli County reported that the species was only recorded in unlogged mixed forest with a rather dense undergrowth of bamboo (Anderson and Dymond 2008). Its diet includes fruit and invertebrates.

The main threat is likely to be the loss and fragmentation of forest. Forest cover in Yunnan declined from c.55% of the land area in the early 1950s, to c.30% in 1975, as a result of logging, and has also declined rapidly in Sichuan since the late 1960s, because of logging for timber and conversion to agriculture and pasture. It is assumed that substantial areas of upper temperate and subalpine zone forests have been lost. Virtually all forest at Kianwu Liangsi, where it was seen in 1989, had been logged. Hunting and trapping may also represent a threat (B. Anderson in litt. 2008).

Conservation Actions Underway
It has not been recorded in any protected areas. However, there are several reserves in Yunnan which probably contain suitable habitat including Baima Xue Shan National Nature Reserve, Haba Xue Shan, and Bitahai and Yulong Xue Shan nature reserves.Conservation Actions Proposed
Survey protected areas and areas of suitable habitat in or near to its known range to determine whether in occurs in any of them. Research its habitat requirements, altitudinal range and population status. Examine the feasibility of establishing a protected area for it in the Ma Hung Valley (Sichuan). List it as a protected species in China.

Anderson, B.; Dymond, N. 2008. White-speckled Laughingthrush Garrulax bieti rediscovered in Sichuan, China. BirdingASIA 9: 94-95.

BirdLife International. 2001. Threatened birds of Asia: the BirdLife International Red Data Book. BirdLife International, Cambridge, U.K.

Further web sources of information
Detailed species accounts from the Threatened birds of Asia: the BirdLife International Red Data Book (BirdLife International 2001).

Explore HBW Alive for further information on this species

Search for photos and videos, and hear sounds of this species from the Internet Bird Collection

Text account compilers
Benstead, P., Derhé, M., Gilroy, J., Khwaja, N.

Anderson, B.

IUCN Red List evaluators
Butchart, S., Symes, A.

Recommended citation
BirdLife International (2016) Species factsheet: Garrulax bieti. Downloaded from on 25/10/2016. Recommended citation for factsheets for more than one species: BirdLife International (2016) IUCN Red List for birds. Downloaded from on 25/10/2016.

This information is based upon, and updates, the information published in BirdLife International (2000) Threatened birds of the world. Barcelona and Cambridge, UK: Lynx Edicions and BirdLife International, BirdLife International (2004) Threatened birds of the world 2004 CD-ROM and BirdLife International (2008) Threatened birds of the world 2008 CD-ROM. These sources provide the information for species accounts for the birds on the IUCN Red List.

To provide new information to update this factsheet or to correct any errors, please email BirdLife

To contribute to discussions on the evaluation of the IUCN Red List status of Globally Threatened Birds, please visit BirdLife's Globally Threatened Bird Forums.

Key facts
Current IUCN Red List category Vulnerable
Family Timaliidae (Babblers and parrotbills)
Species name author (Oustalet, 1897)
Population size 2500-9999 mature individuals
Population trend Decreasing
Distribution size (breeding/resident) 23,400 km2
Country endemic? Yes
Links to further information
- Additional Information on this species