Family Guineafowl (Numididae)


White-breasted Guineafowl (Agelastes meleagrides)


French: Pintade à poitrine blanche German: Weißbrust-Perlhuhn Spanish: Pintada pechiblanca

Agelastes meleagrides


, 1850,

no locality = Ghana


Thought to be closely related to A. niger. Monotypic.


Remnant forest patches from SE Sierra Leone (Gola Forest region) through Liberia and Ivory Coast to SW Ghana.

Descriptive notes

c. 40–45 cm; c. 815 g (in captivity). Head and upper neck bare; rose-red skin becomes pink on lower neck, with white filaments; lower neck, breast and upper back pure... read more


Deep “kok-kok” given by flock members in contact; also described as quiet twittering;... read more


Dense primary rainforest, with apparent preference for drier areas; also found in nearby patches of... read more

Food and feeding

Mostly invertebrates, including termites, ants, crickets, millipedes, worms, beetle larvae (Chrysomelidae), spiders and small molluscs;... read more


Oct–May, perhaps peaking at end of wet season, in Nov–Jan, but equally may breed throughout year (e.g. in Liberia). Downy... read more


Sedentary. Short local movements over c. 0·9 km².

Status and conservation

VULNERABLE. One of most threatened species in Africa; formerly treated as Endangered. Total population estimated at 85,000 birds; undergoing major decline due to destruction... read more

Recommended citation

Martínez, I. & Kirwan, G.M. (2019). White-breasted Guineafowl (Agelastes meleagrides). 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 24 February 2019).