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Bornean Wren-babbler Ptilocichla leucogrammica
BirdLife is updating this factsheet for the 2016 Red List
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This species is restricted to lowland forest in a region where this habitat-type is being cleared and degraded at a rapid rate. As such, rapid population declines are suspected, and the species is consequently listed as Vulnerable.

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

15 cm. Small, terrestrial, forest-dwelling babbler. Warm brown upperparts. White throat lightly scaled dusky, pale sides of head and supercilium mottled dusky. Rest of underparts blackish with broad white streaks. Short tail and pinkish, relatively long legs. Similar spp. Striated Wren-babbler Kenopia striata is smaller with pale streaks on upperparts and wholly pale underparts. Voice Song consists of two pure tone notes fii-fii.

Distribution and population
Ptilocichla leucogrammica is endemic to the island of Borneo where it occurs in Sabah and Sarawak, Malaysia, and Kalimantan, Indonesia (BirdLife International 2001). It appears to be generally scarce and local, but occasionally fairly common in favourable habitat.

Population justification
The population size is preliminarily estimated to fall into the band 10,000-19,999 mature individuals. This equates to 15,000-29,999 individuals in total, rounded here to 15,000-30,000 individuals.

Trend justification
The population is suspected to be in rapid decline, owing to the rapid nature of habitat destruction throughout the range.

This species frequents lowland, tropical evergreen forest and sometimes peat swamp forest, ascending into the foothills locally to 900 m. It is usually found in pairs on the ground in dark and shady understorey vegetation.

Loss of low altitude dryland forest is the primary threat to this species. Kalimantan as a whole lost 90,000 km2 of this habitat in the period 1985-1997, representing just under 25% of its 1985 cover. Furthermore, protected areas are by no means exempt: Gunung Palung National Park, for example, has been at least 80% hand-logged. The scale of lowland deforestation and destruction throughout Borneo owing to logging, drought, fire and clearance for agriculture and human developments suggests that the overall population of this species is declining precipitously.

Conservation Actions Underway
It occurs in Kayan-Mentarang (Kalimantan), Gunung Palung (Kalimantan) and Similajau (Sarawak) National Parks and Danum Valley Conservation Area (Sabah), as well as Tabin, Samunsam, Gunung Mulu and Pleihari-Martapura Reserves.Conservation Actions Proposed
Survey lowland forest throughout Borneo to clarify the range, status and ecological requirements of this species, and assess the scale of threats that it faces. Formulate a management strategy for this species and a suite of other birds largely reliant on lowland forest in the Sundaic region. Promote the effective management of existing protected areas in this region and the expansion of the protected-area network. Lobby for reduced logging and sustainable logging practices throughout its range.

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., Gilroy, J., Taylor, J., Allinson, T

Lambert, F., van Balen, B., Davidson, G.

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

Recommended citation
BirdLife International (2016) Species factsheet: Ptilocichla leucogrammica. Downloaded from on 21/10/2016. Recommended citation for factsheets for more than one species: BirdLife International (2016) IUCN Red List for birds. Downloaded from on 21/10/2016.

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.

Additional resources for this species

ARKive species - Bornean wren babbler (Ptilocichla leucogrammica) 0

Key facts
Current IUCN Red List category Vulnerable
Family Timaliidae (Babblers and parrotbills)
Species name author (Bonaparte, 1850)
Population size 10000-19999 mature individuals
Population trend Decreasing
Distribution size (breeding/resident) 608,000 km2
Country endemic? No
Links to further information
- Additional Information on this species