Family Vireos (Vireonidae)

Least Concern

White-browed Shrike-babbler (Pteruthius aeralatus)


French: Allotrie de Blyth German: Rostflügel-Würgervireo Spanish: Vireo alcaudón cejiblanco

Pteruthius æralatus


, 1855,

mountainous interior of Tenasserim, Myanmar


Until recently considered conspecific with P. flaviscapis (which see). Molecular and vocal evidence invoked to reinstate and even elevate to species rank the form ripleyi#R#R, which was treated as a synonym of validirostris in HBW but here accepted as a race (recent recordings revealing situation to be far less clear-cut than claimed#R); similar criteria invoked to elevate annamensis to species rank#R#R, but more conclusive information on diagnostic characters is required in order to validate any further splitting of this species. Proposed race lingshuiensis (Hainan) included in ricketti. Populations in Peninsular Malaysia currently included in race cameranoi, but are in fact intermediate between that taxon and schauenseei. Eight subspecies recognized.

Subspecies and Distribution
  • P. a. ripleyi Biswas, 1960 – Himalayan Shrike-babbler – NE Pakistan E in W Himalayas to W Nepal.
  • P. a. validirostris Koelz, 1951 – Chestnut-winged Shrike-babbler – Himalayas from C Nepal E to Bhutan and all NE Indian hill states, adjacent S China (SE Xizang) and NW & W Myanmar.
  • P. a. ricketti Ogilvie-Grant, 1904 – Grey-breasted Shrike-babbler – NE Myanmar, S & SE China (WC Sichuan S to NW & W Yunnan and E to N Fujian, also Hainan) and N Indochina.
  • P. a. aeralatus Blyth, 1855 – Blyth's Shrike-babbler – E & SE Myanmar (including N Tenasserim), most of Thailand, Laos, C Vietnam and S Cambodia.
  • P. a. schauenseei Deignan, 1946 – S Thailand S of Isthmus of Kra.
  • P. a. cameranoi Salvadori, 1879 – Peninsular Malaysia and Sumatra.
  • P. a. robinsoni Chasen & Kloss, 1931 – Borneo.
  • P. a. annamensis Robinson & Kloss, 1919 – Da Lat Shrike-babbler – S Vietnam (S Annam); expected in E Cambodia#R.
  • Descriptive notes

    14 cm; 29–44 g. Medium-sized shrike-babbler with chestnut on tertials; male is black-crowned and white below, with bold white rear supercilium and grey upperparts;... read more


    Sings with repeated loud strident rhythmic series of notes (typically 4–6 in Indonesia, 4–5 in... read more


    Broadleaf evergreen forest, oak-rhododendron forest, coniferous forest, montane ericaceous... read more

    Food and feeding

    Insects, including grasshoppers and locustids (Orthoptera), moths and caterpillars (Lepidoptera) and beetles (Coleoptera); also berries,... read more


    Season Apr–Jun in India, Myanmar and China; song in Bhutan Apr–Jul; Jan–Apr in Thailand and S Annam, Apr in Laos and Feb–Jun in Peninsular... read more


    Resident; seasonal altitudinal displacements in Bhutan, Nepal and elsewhere in Himalayas,... read more

    Status and conservation

    Not globally threatened (Least Concern). Commonest shrike-babbler. In Pakistan, fairly common in Murree Hills but otherwise rare and local. Fairly common in Nepal. Common in... read more

    Recommended citation

    del Hoyo, J., Collar, N. & Kirwan, G.M. (2019). White-browed Shrike-babbler (Pteruthius aeralatus). 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 22 April 2019).