Rufous-fronted Babbler    Stachyridopsis rufifrons


  • Stachyridopsis : Greek word stakhus –ear of wheat; rhis -nostrils;opsis- Appearance { reference to the shape of the opercula or scales almost closing the nostrils}
  • Rufifrons: Latin word Rufi- Rufous; frons- forehead {Rufous forehead}

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

Description: Size of 12 cm; wt.of 9–12 g. The nominate race has dull rufous crown, shading to buff-brown on upperparts, upperwing and tail. The lores and vaguely defined narrow supercilium are whitish-grey, cheek, ear-coverts, neck-sides, breast, and flanks are buffy. The chin and throat are buffy white with very narrow dark shaft-streaks, mid-belly is buffy white. The iris is red to brown; bill is dark grey to bluish horn. The legs are greenish-yellow to horn-grey.  Both the sexes are similar. The juvenile has weaker rufous cap than adult, rustier edges of wings and tail, barely visible throat streaks, paler underparts.

Habitat: It is found in dense undergrowth and bamboo thickets in open forest and forest clearings, jungle with grass in open forest, secondary growth and scrub in abandoned clearings, light deciduous or semi-evergreen forest, upland heath, grasslands and scrub-jungle, stunted growth on limestone, overgrown cultivation, smaller trees and bushes in primary and secondary broadleaf evergreen forest. It is found at 120 m–1200 m in Indian Subcontinent.

Food habits: It eats insects and berries also consumed occasionally. It is found in pairs during breeding season; at other times in small parties of up to six individuals, often in association with other species, including other babblers, in mixed flocks. It usually forages in low undergrowth not far above ground.

Breeding habits:  They breed in Feb–Aug throughout range. The nest  is a dome, sometimes semi-dome or deep cup, made of bamboo and other leaves and grasses, lined with rootlets, placed between supporting twigs of bamboo on bed of rubbish and leaves in bamboo clump or among stems of palm, . they lay a clutch of 3–5. The incubation is done by both sexes. Brood parasitism done by Large Hawk-cuckoo and Hodgson’s Hawk-cuckoo.