Family Asian Barbets (Megalaimidae)

Least Concern

Sri Lanka Barbet (Psilopogon rubricapillus)


French: Barbu à couronne rouge German: Sri-Lanka-Schmiedbartvogel Spanish: Barbudo de Ceilán
Other common names: Crimson-throated Barbet, Crimson-fronted Barbet, Sri Lankan Small Barbet

Bucco rubricapillus

J. F. Gmelin

, 1788,

Sri Lanka


Until recently, treated as conspecific with P. malabaricus, the two, with P. haemacephalus, forming the so-called Xantholaema group. Monotypic.


Sri Lanka.

Descriptive notes

16–17 cm; 32–39·5 g. Small, chunky, green barbet with reddish legs and feet. Male with red forehead, gold over and under eye, black line through eye, all... read more


Song a series of groups of 3–8 (usually four), staccato, sweet “tok” or “... read more


Inhabits evergreen forest, forest edges, plantations of fruiting trees, and remnant forest patches... read more

Food and feeding

Figs, such as those of banyan and bo trees, also other fruits, berries; small insects, including caterpillars, borer larvae, ants and... read more


Season Dec–Sept. Ecology of present species very poorly studied, especially in comparison to formerly conspecific P. malabaricus... read more


Resident; mainly sedentary, some feeding outside territory, young disperse away from territory.

Status and conservation

Not globally threatened. Common in in wet lowlands, more local in dry zone. Appears reasonably adaptable, but habitat degradation and destruction are considered possible... read more

Recommended citation

Short, L.L., Horne, J.F.M. & Kirwan, G.M. (2020). Sri Lanka Barbet (Psilopogon rubricapillus). 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 16 February 2020).