Family Crows and Jays (Corvidae)

Least Concern

Bornean Green Magpie (Cissa jefferyi)


French: Pirolle de Bornéo German: Borneobuschelster Spanish: Urraca colicorta de Borneo

Cissa jefferyi


, 1888,

Mt Kinabalu, northern Borneo


Until recently considered conspecific with C. thalassina, but it has different, purer whistles leading to complex phrases given by either one or (asynchronously) two birds (at least 2); appears to lack thalassina’s long series of fast repeated identical notes (at least 1)#R; and, on basis of published evidence#R, it differs further in its longer tail (effect size 3.97; score 2); shorter wing and tarsus (effect size −2.15) and shallower bill (−3.38) (score 2); whitish vs red irides (3); and tail with dark subterminal bars and white tips vs no such pattern (3). Monotypic.


N Borneo from Mt Kinabalu S to Mt Murud, the Usan Apau Plateau, Mt Dulit and Menyapa Mts#R.

Descriptive notes

33 cm. Distinctive green magpie with fairly long, bluntly graduated tail, slightly elongated rear crown feathers, rather prominent bill, nostrils concealed by soft plumes (... read more


Voice remarkably sweet and musical at times, including a series of 5–10 high-pitched chirping notes... read more


Found exclusively in true montane forest, from 1400 m (occasionally 900 m or even down to 305 m) up... read more

Food and feeding

Recorded food items emphasize importance of snails (Gastropoda) in diet; feeds also on variety of insects and their larvae, and suspected... read more


Poorly documented. Family parties reported in Apr, suggesting egg-laying in early Feb, and nestbuilding observed also in Apr; two young... read more



Status and conservation

Not globally threatened (Least Concern). This species appears to be not uncommon in higher-elevation forests of Mt Kinabalu National Park (IUCN Cat. II; 754 km²). Also known... read more

Recommended citation

del Hoyo, J., Collar, N. & Christie, D.A. (2020). Bornean Green Magpie (Cissa jefferyi). 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 January 2020).