Family Bulbuls (Pycnonotidae)

Least Concern

Sumatran Bulbul (Ixos sumatranus)


French: Bulbul de Sumatra German: Sumatrabülbül Spanish: Bulbul de Sumatra

Hemixus [sic] sumatranus


, 1882,

Mount Singgalang, western Sumatra


Hitherto treated as conspecific with I. virescens, but differs in its white-streaked olive-brown vs clear whitish throat (2); long narrow pale streaks vs much more diffuse streaks on olive-brown vs paler, greener breast, and extending less far onto belly (3); dull olive-brown vs dull olive-green upperparts (2); more streaked and pointed feathers on crown (ns[2]); less streaked ear-coverts (ns[1]); and (based on relatively few recordings) no similarities between voices, such that comparisons of apparently homologous calls would result in scores totalling 5#R. Monotypic.


Mountains of Sumatra.

Descriptive notes

20 cm. Medium-large, slender, streaky bulbul, elongated crown feathering forming small crest. Adult is similar to formerly conspecific I. virescens of Java (see... read more


Song is reported to be undescribed, whereas he call is a short, sharp, high-pitched “swit”,... read more


Evergreen forest, edges and secondary growth in montane and submontane areas, 850–2500 m; highest... read more

Food and feeding

A generalist, feeding on fruit and insects. Stomachs of birds from N Sumatra contained mostly fruit (“one round, orange-coloured berry, one... read more


Apparently nothing known.



Status and conservation

Not globally threatened (Least Concern). Restricted-range species: present in Sumatra and Peninsular Malaysia EBA. Fairly common in highland protected areas, such as Kerinci-... read more

Recommended citation

del Hoyo, J., Collar, N. & Kirwan, G.M. (2019). Sumatran Bulbul (Ixos sumatranus). 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 August 2019).