Family Woodpeckers (Picidae)

Least Concern

Rufous Piculet (Sasia abnormis)


French: Picumne roux German: Malaienmausspecht Spanish: Carpinterito malayo

Picumnus abnormis


, 1825,



Two subspecies recognized.

Subspecies and Distribution
  • S. a. abnormis (Temminck, 1825) – S Myanmar (Tenasserim) and adjacent SW Thailand S to Sumatra (including Belitung I), Borneo and W & C Java.
  • S. a. magnirostris E. J. O. Hartert, 1901 – Nias I, off NW Sumatra.
  • Descriptive notes

    8–9·5 cm; 7·2–12 g. Male has yellow forehead, sometimes with rufous ­admixed, yellowish-olive crown to hindneck; remainder of head and neck... read more


    Single sharp “tsit” or “tic”, usually repeated; high-pitched rapid “... read more


    Secondary forest with old decaying trees, swamp-forest, to lesser extent primary forest; much... read more

    Food and feeding

    Ants and their larvae, and small bark beetles (Scolytidae); soft insects and their larvae; also spiders. Hunts singly, or in family parties... read more


    May–Aug; from Feb in Borneo. Nest excavated low down in dead branch, sapling or bamboo stem; 2 nest-holes in Peninsular Malaysia were... read more


    Resident. In ringing studies in Malaysia, two females retrapped after several years only 800 m from... read more

    Status and conservation

    Not globally threatened. Fairly common to common in Myanmar, Thailand, Sumatra and Borneo; common in Peninsular Malaysia, but absent from Singapore. Occurs in several... read more

    Recommended citation

    Winkler, H. & Christie, D.A. (2019). Rufous Piculet (Sasia abnormis). 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 13 December 2019).