Family Grasshopper-warblers and Grassbirds (Locustellidae)

Least Concern

Sichuan Grasshopper-warbler (Locustella chengi)


French: Locustelle de Cheng German: Sichuanschwirl Spanish: Zarzalero de Sichuan
Other common names: Sichuan Bush-warbler

Locustella chengi

Alström et al.

, 2015,

Honghegu, Shaanxi Province, China (34°01’07” N, 107°47’45” E), 1640 m a.s.l


Recently described. Differs in plumage, morphometrics and song from some populations of L. mandelli (both nominate and race melanorhyncha), accompanied by some genetic divergence; L. chengi and L. mandelli occur in sympatry but are almost entirely segregated by elevation in S Sichuan and NE Jiangxi#R. Monotypic.


Mid-elevations of C China in Sichuan, Shaanxi, Hubei, Hunan and Guizhou, with a single record from NW Jiangxi; non-breeding unknown#R.

Descriptive notes

c. 13 cm. Medium-sized bush warbler with warm grey-brown upperparts and wings, narrow pale greyish-white supraloral stripe and eye-crescents, whitish throat, pale brownish-... read more


Song, a steadily repeated, rather rasping, frog-like series of notes, is less variable in pitch and... read more


Occurs in summer in open habitats with dense low vegetation of herbs and/or ferns, often associated... read more

Food and feeding

Diet wholly unknown and even the species' foraging behaviour is undescribed. Like congeners, extremely secretive and usually difficult to... read more


Practically unknown, although season is presumed to commence in May. Most aspects of breeding behaviour are presumably similar to those of... read more


Presumed migrant, but wintering grounds as yet wholly unknown.

Status and conservation

Not yet assessed by IUCN/BirdLife International. However, the species probably should be classified as Least Concern given its general abundance and because its habitat is... read more

Recommended citation

Kirwan, G.M. (2019). Sichuan Grasshopper-warbler (Locustella chengi). 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).