Red-billed Scimitar Babbler  Pomatorhinus ochraceiceps


  • Pomatorhinus: Greek word pomatos – lid, cover; rhinos- nostrils. {Lid covered nostrils}
  • Ochraceiceps : Latin word ochraceous- ochraceous (light brownish yellow) ; ceps-capped {yellow capped}

Vernacular Name: Naga: Inrui-gna, Mar: samsher, Kurbahu Satbhai

Distribution in India: Resident of North East hills in India.

Description:  Size of 22–24 cm; wt. of 33–38 g. It is distinctive, with long decurved orange bill. The nominate race has mid-brown crown and upperparts, upperwing and tail are rufescent. It has long white supercilium and lores including nasal feathering, cheek is black, ear-coverts are blackish-bronze; chin and submoustachial area to mid-belly is white. The flanks are buffish, becoming greyer lower down and on thighs and vent; iris is sandy yellow to dull pinkish-cream, the bill is orange to orange-red; legs are slate-green or yellowish-brown. Both the sexes are similar. The juvenile has shorter bill than adult.

Habitat: It is found in broadleaf evergreen forest and bamboo clumps. It is found from 300–2400 m.

Food habits: It eats invertebrates, including snails, caterpillars and beetles, nectar and seeds. It stays in pairs or small parties, often associating with babblers and bird waves. It forages in under storey to middle storey; more arboreal than congeners. It also forages on ground, and probes into flowers of forest trees for nectar.

Breeding habits:  They breed in Mar–Jul in India. The nest is an oval ball made of broad grass blades, bamboo leaves and a few other dead leaves, loosely put together, lined with finer materials and rootlets, placed on ground, nearly covered by fallen leaves, or low down in undergrowth or creepers. They lay a clutch of 3–5 eggs.