Family Rollers (Coraciidae)

Least Concern

Indochinese Roller (Coracias affinis)


French: Rollier d’Indochine German: Purpurbrustracke Spanish: Carraca indochina

Corvus affinis


, 1840,



Usually treated as conspecific with C. benghalensis on account of zone of intergradation from C Nepal to W Assam#R, but differs in dull buff-grey face, throat, breast and mid-belly with violet tinge (sometimes vague bluish streaks), dull blue-grey lower belly vs pinkish-rufous face to breast with bold pale buff streaks, pale rufous mid-belly, turquoise lower belly (3); no rufous hindcollar (2); wing-coverts mostly deep blue vs half deep blue, half turquoise (ns[2]); no white frons (ns[2]); black vs brown lores (ns[1]); dark blue postocular line vs none (ns[2]); outer tail centrally dark blue vs turquoise and terminally turquoise vs dark blue (3); darker above (ns[1]); narrow zone of intergradation (2). May be closely related to C. temminckii. Monotypic.


E Nepal, Bhutan and NE India (Bihar, Assam) E to SC China (S Sichuan, Yunnan), and S to peninsular Thailand and Indochina.

Descriptive notes

30–34 cm. Previously considered to be conspecific with partially allopatric C. benghalensis (see Taxonomy comments). Upperparts (including mantle, back, scapulars... read more


Compared to both races of C. benghalensis that of C. affinis is slightly... read more


Inhabits light Casuarina woodland, patchy dune scrub, coconut plantations, open marshland... read more

Food and feeding

No detailed studies, but no known differences from C. benghalensis.


Few if any differences from C. benghalensis. Season at least Apr–May in Thai-Malay Peninsula, but undoubtedly also earlier, and... read more


Probably more sedentary than C. benghalensis; however, appears to be subject to ill-... read more

Status and conservation

Not globally threatened. Common over much of its range; locally abundant and conspicuous in SE Asia. Likely to have increased with deforestation and urbanization. Not known... read more

Recommended citation

del Hoyo, J., Collar, N. & Kirwan, G.M. (2019). Indochinese Roller (Coracias affinis). 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 19 March 2019).