Family Accentors (Prunellidae)

Least Concern

Altai Accentor (Prunella himalayana)


French: Accenteur de l’Himalaya German: Himalajabraunelle Spanish: Acentor del Himalaya
Other common names: Himalayan Accentor

Accentor Himalayanus


, 1842,



Closest to, and forming a species group with, P. collaris; the two sometimes placed in a separate genus, Laiscopus. Monotypic.


Mountains from S Russia (Altai region E to mountains E of L Baikal) and NW Mongolia S to Tien Shan and Pamirs and NE Afghanistan; non-breeding in Himalayas (E at least to Bhutan). Range limits not well known.

Descriptive notes

15 cm; 25–29 g. Has grey head with some black streaking; mantle and back chestnut-brown with dark streaks, rump paler brown; wings dark rufous-brown, two white wingbars... read more


Male song, from rock perch and in aerial pursuit of female, a loud warbling with trills and fluted... read more


In summer, stony alpine meadows and bare rocky hillsides with sparse cover, usually avoiding scree... read more

Food and feeding

Mostly invertebrates in summer; in winter, seeds supplemented by berries. Recorded as feeding flies (Diptera), lepidopterans, beetles (... read more


Season May–Aug; probably double-brooded, but details poorly known. Has been described as monogamous, but mating system and parental... read more


Poorly known. Post-breeding migration to lower altitudes, particularly from N slopes and ridges in... read more

Status and conservation

Not globally threatened. Locally common. No estimates of numbers available; in S Siberia, described as second most abundant species in alpine tundra area of Sayano-Shushensky... read more

Recommended citation

Hatchwell, B. (2020). Altai Accentor (Prunella himalayana). In: del Hoyo, J., Elliott, A., Sargatal, J., Christie, D.A. & de Juana, E. (eds.). Handbook of the Birds of the World Alive. Lynx Edicions, Barcelona. (retrieved from on 28 February 2020).