Family Frogmouths (Podargidae)

Least Concern

Sunda Frogmouth (Batrachostomus cornutus)


French: Podarge cornu German: Sundafroschmaul Spanish: Podargo cornudo

Podargus cornutus


, 1822,

Bengkulu, Sumatra


Formerly considered conspecific with B. javensis by some, but combined study of vocalizations and museum specimens#R supported earlier suggestions that the two should be regarded as separate species. Recent suggestion that population of a small Batrachostomus frogmouth in Palawan (W Philippines) may be a race of present species is without foundation, as Palawan birds constitute race chaseni of B. javensis. Since 2005, several observations (and photographs) of a frogmouth on island of Siberut, off W Sumatra, perhaps involve this species or B. javensis, or alternatively an undescribed taxon#R#R; further study required. Has been suggested that birds from Borneo and Sumatra display consistent morphological differences that should be recognized taxonomically#R. Two subspecies recognized.

Subspecies and Distribution
  • B. c. cornutus (Temminck, 1822) – Sumatra, Bangka and Belitung, and Borneo, including Banggi I (off N Borneo).
  • B. c. longicaudatus Hoogerwerf, 1962 – Kangean Is (NE of Java).
  • Possibly present also on Siberut, off W Sumatra#R#R.

    Descriptive notes

    23–28 cm. Plumage coloration very variable, and much confusion in the literature over how much of the variation is attributable to sexual dichromatism and how much to... read more


    Territorial song, presumably of female, a descending series of “qwaa” units, like... read more


    Differs from congeners in occurring mainly in secondary forest or at forest edge; also reported in... read more

    Food and feeding

    One stomach contained beetle (Coleoptera) remains, while large katydids (Holochlora sp.), an American cockroach (Periplaneta... read more


    Poorly known; on Sumatra an egg in Jun and a nestling in early May, while on offshore Bangka I, adults with chicks observed in late Jun,... read more


    Apparently sedentary.

    Status and conservation

    Not globally threatened (Least Concern). Little recent information on its status, but probably the commonest of the smaller Batrachostomus on Borneo, where known... read more

    Recommended citation

    Holyoak, D.T. & Kirwan, G.M. (2020). Sunda Frogmouth (Batrachostomus cornutus). 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 17 February 2020).