Family Old World Warblers and Parrotbills (Sylviidae)

Least Concern

Spectacled Parrotbill (Sinosuthora conspicillata)


French: Paradoxornis à lunettes German: Brillenpapageimeise Spanish: Picoloro de anteojos

[Suthora] conspicillata


, 1871,

easternmost Kokonor [= Qinghai Hu], China


Race rocki not very distinct (slightly thicker bill was greatly exaggerated in the text figure in type description), and supposedly paler plumage and lighter brown head not discernible on museum specimens examined; species may be better treated as monotypic. Two subspecies tentatively recognized.

Subspecies and Distribution
  • S. c. conspicillata (David, 1871) – C China from E Qinghai E to S Gansu, NC & NE Sichuan and S Shaanxi, China.
  • S. c. rocki (Bangs & J. L. Peters, 1928) – W Hubei, in EC China.
  • Descriptive notes

    14–15 cm; 8–9 g. A relatively small and long-tailed parrotbill, recalling S. webbiana. Has forehead to nape dull chestnut-brown, merging into colour of... read more


    Song a very thin, high, piercing, penetrating series of 4–5 notes, “tsiu-tsiu-tsiu-tsiu”, “... read more


    Mixed broadleaf scrub, dense prickly oak (Quercus) mixed with willows (Salix) and... read more

    Food and feeding

    No information on diet. Usually in small flocks of up to 15 individuals, sometimes as many as 40, outside breeding season. Forages at low... read more


    Season Jun–Aug. Observation of food-carrying by both members of a pair suggests that young are fed by both sexes. No other... read more



    Status and conservation

    Not globally threatened. Not well known. Has rather limited range in C China, where generally considered to be rather uncommon. Recorded regularly at Wolong Nature Reserve,... read more

    Recommended citation

    Robson, C. (2020). Spectacled Parrotbill (Sinosuthora conspicillata). 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 21 February 2020).