Family Thrushes (Turdidae)

Critically Endangered

Principe Thrush (Turdus xanthorhynchus)


French: Merle de Principé German: Príncipedrossel Spanish: Zorzal de Príncipe

Turdus xanthorhynchus


, 1901,



Until recently treated as conspecific with T. olivaceofuscus, but is genetically, morphologically and vocally divergent#R, differing in its smaller size with clearly shorter bill (at least 1); marginally deeper bill (ns); bluish-white vs brown irides (3); yellow vs dusky bill and legs (3); brown-streaked white vs white-streaked brown throat, with bold vs soft brown scaling on lower breast and belly (2); low-frequency “gurgling” call, unlike any other African Turdus (3). Monotypic.


Príncipe, in Gulf of Guinea.

Descriptive notes

24 cm. Dull olive-brown from head across upperparts to tail, although the head is slightly darker than the rest; chin and throat dusky buff with whitish streaks, becoming... read more


Less vocal than formerly conspecific T. olivaceofuscus and their voices reportedly differ... read more


Occupies the understorey and midstorey of lowland and mid-elevation primary forest, especially in... read more

Food and feeding

Diet has not been described, but is presumably similar to that of T. olivaceofuscus. Readily approaches people and will forage on... read more


Apparently nothing known, although juveniles have been trapped in Nov/Dec.



Status and conservation

Critically Endangered. Restricted-range species: present in Príncipe EBA. Has been considered very rare and possibly extinct, but rediscovered in 1997 and during fieldwork in... read more

Recommended citation

del Hoyo, J., Collar, N. & Kirwan, G.M. (2020). Principe Thrush (Turdus xanthorhynchus). 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 28 February 2020).