Family Thrushes (Turdidae)

Least Concern

Glossy-black Thrush (Turdus serranus)


French: Merle lustré German: Samtdrossel Spanish: Mirlo serrano

Turdus serranus


, 1844,



Formerly included T. infuscatus as a race, but that species rather smaller, with different song, female with distinctive underwing-coverts; separate treatment supported by genetic data#R. Birds from N Argentina (Jujuy) described as race unicolor, but that name invalid, as preoccupied; replacement name continoi proposed#R; here included in nominate. Four subspecies recognized.

Subspecies and Distribution
  • T. s. atrosericeus (Lafresnaye, 1848) – NE Colombia and N Venezuela.
  • T. s. cumanensis (Hellmayr, 1919) – NE Venezuela.
  • T. s. fuscobrunneus (Chapman, 1912) – C & S Colombia and Ecuador.
  • T. s. serranus Tschudi, 1844 – Peru, W Bolivia and NW Argentina.
  • Descriptive notes

    23–25 cm; 70–90 g. Male nominate race is all glossy black, with yellow bill, eyering and legs. Female is dark olive-brown above, slightly paler and redder below,... read more


    Song, often from exposed perch in canopy (sometimes from within epiphyte), usually given for c. 30... read more


    Middle and upper strata of primary humid and wet subtropical and temperate montane forest, tall... read more

    Food and feeding

    Fruits and berries. Forages arboreally, seldom visiting ground, but sometimes hopping into open along roads in twilight. Regularly gathers... read more


    Mar–Aug in Colombia (song period Feb–Jul in W Andes), but fledglings seen also in Oct and Nov; fledglings in Feb and Jun in... read more


    Presumably mainly sedentary. Some seasonal altitudinal and other movements indicated by records in... read more

    Status and conservation

    Not globally threatened. Fairly common. Locally common in Venezuela. Fairly common in Podocarpus National Park, in Ecuador. Present in several other protected areas,... read more

    Recommended citation

    Collar, N. (2020). Glossy-black Thrush (Turdus serranus). 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 25 February 2020).