Family Bowerbirds (Ptilonorhynchidae)

Least Concern

MacGregor's Bowerbird (Amblyornis macgregoriae)


French: Jardinier de MacGregor German: Goldhauben-Laubenvogel Spanish: Pergolero de MacGregor

Amblyornis macgregoriæ

De Vis

, 1890,

Musgrave Range, 7000–9000 ft [c. 2130–2740 m], south-east New Guinea


Has hybridized with A. subalaris. Race germana sometimes treated as a separate species#R, and at least some of its bowers differ from those typical of the species; display behaviour also different, and apparently some genetic divergence noted (further study in progress). Seven subspecies recognized.

Subspecies and Distribution
  • A. m. mayri E. J. O. Hartert, 1930 – W & C New Guinea (Weyland Mts E to W Hindenburg Mts).
  • A. m. kombok Schodde & McKean, 1973 – E New Guinea probably from at least Strickland R (possibly from Hindenberg Range) E to Mt Hagen, Kubor Range, Bismarck Range and Kratke Range.
  • A. m. lecroyae C. B. Frith & D. W. Frith, 1997 – Mt Bosavi, in EC New Guinea.
  • A. m. amati T. K. Pratt, 1982 – Adelbert Mts, in NE New Guinea.
  • A. m. macgregoriae De Vis, 1890 – MacGregor’s Bowerbird – SE New Guinea from W Kukukuku and Herzog Range E to W Owen Stanley Range.
  • A. m. nubicola Schodde & McKean, 1973 – E Owen Stanley Range (Mt Dayman and Mt Simpson Massifs, and probably E from Mt Suckling), in extreme SE New Guinea.
  • A. m. germana Rothschild, 1910 – Huon Bowerbird – mountains of Huon Peninsula, in NE New Guinea.
  • Descriptive notes

    26 cm; male 100–145 g (immature male 110–139 g), female 104–140 g. Male nominate race is dark brownish-olive above, a little paler on face and neck,... read more


    Male at bower site gives loud advertisement vocalizations, including harsh tearing sounds, growls,... read more


    Primary tall mixed montane and southern beech (Nothofagus) rainforest, and rarely moss... read more

    Food and feeding

    Mostly fruits, also some flowers and animals (mostly arthropods). Nestling diet fruits and arthropods, including cicadas (Cicadidae) and... read more


    Season Sept–Feb; eggs Oct–Jan on Mt Missim (E New Guinea), and a well-incubated egg in early Jul on Mt Hagen; display season... read more


    Resident. Immatures and females may descend to lower elevations in winter months. Females and... read more

    Status and conservation

    Not globally threatened. Common and widespread throughout range. Mt Bosavi race (lecroyae) known from just nine specimens. In Oct 1999, portable saw-mill logging,... read more

    Recommended citation

    Frith, C. & Frith, D. (2019). MacGregor's Bowerbird (Amblyornis macgregoriae). 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 17 June 2019).