Family Waxbills (Estrildidae)

Least Concern

White-bellied Munia (Lonchura leucogastra)


French: Capucin à ventre blanc German: Weißbauch-Bronzemännchen Spanish: Capuchino ventriblanco

Amadina leucogastra


, 1846,

Malacca, Peninsular Malaysia


Has sometimes been considered conspecific with L. leucogastroides, which it closely resembles in plumage. Six subspecies recognized.

Subspecies and Distribution
  • L. l. leucogastra (Blyth, 1846) – extreme S Myanmar (S Tenasserim), S Thailand, Peninsular Malaysia, Sumatra and W Java.
  • L. l. everetti (Tweeddale, 1877) – N Philippines (Calayan, Camiguin Norte, Luzon, Polillo, Mindoro and Catanduanes).
  • L. l. manueli Parkes, 1958 – C & S Philippines.
  • L. l. palawana Ripley & Rabor, 1962 – W Philippines (Calamian Group, Palawan, Basilan, Jolo and Tawitawi) and N & E Borneo (Sabah, Brunei, NE Sarawak and NW part of E Kalimantan).
  • L. l. smythiesi Parkes, 1958 – W Borneo (W Sarawak and W Kalimantan).
  • L. l. castanonota Mayr, 1938 – S Borneo.
  • Descriptive notes

    11 cm; 10·6-12·3 g. Nominate race has head to back and rump dark brown, back and rump with pale shaft streaks on, uppertail-coverts brownish-black, tail quills dark brown... read more


    Call of male "twyrt", of female "tee tee tee"; alarm a strong "tik!" or "tchek!". Song "di-di-... read more


    Lowland forest, forest edge, peatswamp-forest, fern tangles, scrub of disturbed forest, rice fields... read more

    Food and feeding

    Grass seeds, including those of rice, Brachiaria distachys and Digitaria marginata, also sedges (Cyperaceae) and seeds of... read more


    Season Mar–Jun in SE Asia, Dec to late May and early Jun in Malay Peninsula; in Philippines, Mar–May on Luzon and Mindanao and... read more


    Resident; some seasonal altitudinal movements in Borneo.

    Status and conservation

    Not globally threatened. Locally common in Malay Peninsula; fairly common to rare in Philippines; rare and local in Borneo; uncommon to rare in Sumatra; one record from W... read more

    Recommended citation

    Payne, R. (2020). White-bellied Munia (Lonchura leucogastra). 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 28 February 2020).