Family Ground Babblers (Pellorneidae)

Least Concern

Greyish Limestone-babbler (Turdinus crispifrons)


French: Turdinule des rochers German: Kalkdrosssling Spanish: Ratina roquera
Other common names: Limestone Wren-babbler (when treated as conspecific with T. calcicola)

Turdinus crispifrons


, 1855,

Mulayit Taung, Tenasserim, Myanmar


Sometimes placed in Gypsophila, but genetic data do not support such treatment#R. Hitherto treated as conspecific with T. calcicola (which see). Two subspecies recognized.

Subspecies and Distribution
  • T. c. annamensis (Delacour & Jabouille, 1928) – S China (S Yunnan), N Laos and N Vietnam (Tonkin, N Annam).
  • T. c. crispifrons Blyth, 1855 – SE Myanmar (including N Tenasserim) and NW & W Thailand.
  • Descriptive notes

    18–20·5 cm; 25·8–28·3 g. Rather long-billed and long-tailed, mid-sized, dark greyish-brown babbler with dark scales above, whitish streaky... read more


    Song a loud rapid faltering series of unevenly pitched harsh slurred notes, starting very abruptly... read more


    Evergreen and mixed deciduous forest and scrub in limestone hill country, usually with boulders and... read more

    Food and feeding

    Insects and seeds. Found in pairs or in small parties of up to six individuals (possibly family parties), moving around rocks and tangled... read more


    Season Aug–Sept. Nest a roofed cup or dome with circular entrance, made from dried twigs, roots and other plant material, neatly... read more



    Status and conservation

    Not globally threatened (Least Concern). Generally locally common across range. Local and uncommon in China. Seemingly much rarer than its habitat in Laos, with very few... read more

    Recommended citation

    Collar, N., Robson, C. & Christie, D.A. (2019). Greyish Limestone-babbler (Turdinus crispifrons). 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 21 April 2019).