Family Pheasants, Partridges, Turkeys, Grouse (Phasianidae)


Crested Argus (Rheinardia ocellata)


French: Argus ocellé German: Perlenfasan Spanish: Argos perlado
Other common names: Ocellated Argus, Crested Argus-pheasant, Malaysian Argus (nigrescens)

Argus ocellatus


, 1871,

Hue, Vietnam


Races are well differentiated; taxonomic study possibly warranted. Two subspecies recognized.

Subspecies and Distribution
  • R. o. ocellata (Elliot, 1871) – Annamite mountain chain in C & S Vietnam (S to the Da Lat Plateau) and neighbouring E Laos.
  • R. o. nigrescens Rothschild, 1902 – mountains in C Peninsular Malaysia, mainly within Taman Negara National Park.
  • Descriptive notes

    Male 190–235 cm (tail 120–173 cm); female 74–75 cm (tail 35–43 cm). Might only be confused with Argusianus argus in parts of C Malaysia, but... read more


    Male’s territorial call is similar to that of Argusianus argus, a loud resonant,... read more


    Race nigrescens found between 680 m and 1200 m at six localities (all within the environs... read more

    Food and feeding

    Food believed to consist mainly of crickets, other insects (possibly including ants) and possibly frogs, but 17 droppings from one dancing... read more


    Little reliable information available, but season believed to begin in Mar, in both Vietnam and Malaysia; calling by court-holding males in... read more


    No information available.

    Status and conservation

    ENDANGERED. Previously considered Near Threatened. Mace-Lande: ocellata vulnerable; nigrescens endangered. CITES I. Overall population estimated at between... read more

    Recommended citation

    McGowan, P.J.K. & Kirwan, G.M. (2019). Crested Argus (Rheinardia ocellata). 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 12 December 2019).