Family Ground Babblers (Pellorneidae)

Near Threatened

Indochinese Wren-babbler (Rimator danjoui)


French: Turdinule de Danjou German: Annamsäbeldrossling Spanish: Ratina indochina
Other common names: Danjou's Babbler, Short-tailed Scimitar-babbler

Rimator danjoui

Robinson and Kloss

, 1919,

Langbian Peaks [c. 12°02’ N 108°26’ E], Annam, Vietnam


HBW treated R. naungmungensis as a subspecies of present species, and this arrangement remains plausible, despite subsequent publications in support of species status#R#R. In Vietnam, birds in NE Tonkin (with stronger black malar area and bold black-and-white feathering on belly) represent an as yet undescribed race, and those in Central Highlands of S part of C Annam (with brown of plumage colder and darker, rufous areas duller and paler, underparts and bill roughly intermediate between those of other races) another such. Two subspecies currently recognized.

Subspecies and Distribution
  • R. d. parvirostris (Delacour, 1927) – Vietnam (SE Tonkin S to N part of C Annam) and adjacent C Laos.
  • R. d. danjoui Robinson & Kloss, 1919 – S Vietnam (S Annam).
  • Possibly undescribed races in Ha Giang Province (NW part of E Tonkin)#R and Ngoc Linh (C Annam)#R.

    Descriptive notes

    18–19 cm. Medium-sized short-tailed babbler, brown above, brown, buff and white below, with long, heavy, partly decurved bill. Nominate race has crown and upperparts... read more


    Sings with a series of short clear monotone high-pitched whistles (each 0·5–0·... read more


    Primary and secondary broadleaf evergreen forest, sometimes in rocky areas; found at 50–1500... read more

    Food and feeding

    Presumably invertebrates. Occurs singly, in pairs or in small family parties. Forages on or just above ground, often among dense vegetation... read more


    Jan–Apr in Vietnam; clutch 2 eggs, perhaps more; family party of four in Vietnam in late May. No other information.



    Status and conservation

    Not globally threatened. Currently considered Near Threatened. ­Restricted-range species: present in Annamese Lowlands EBA and Da Lat Plateau EBA. Formerly considered... read more

    Recommended citation

    Collar, N., Robson, C. & Christie, D.A. (2019). Indochinese Wren-babbler (Rimator danjoui). 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 22 April 2019).