Family Old World Buntings (Emberizidae)

Least Concern

White-capped Bunting (Emberiza stewarti)


French: Bruant de Stewart German: Silberkopfammer Spanish: Escribano de Stewart
Other common names: Chestnut-breasted Bunting

Euspiza stewarti


, 1854,

Landour and Dehra Dun, Uttarakhand, India




Mountains from S Kazakhstan (Karatau Range), S Uzbekistan, Kyrgyzstan and Tajikistan S to extreme SE Turkmenistan (Kugitang Range), Afghanistan, W & N Pakistan, Kashmir and N India (E at least to C Himachal Pradesh); winter range includes S Afghanistan and Pakistan, but most birds move farther S into N India (S to Gujarat, W Uttar Pradesh, Madhya Pradesh, NE Maharashtra); recently recorded in China (W Xinjiang)#R.

Descriptive notes

15 cm; 13–21 g. Distinctive bunting with comparatively small bill. Male breeding (worn plumage) has crown and nape, side of head and upper breast light buffy grey,... read more


Song, from top of small bush or crag, usually a simple phrase, rather variable, can be a buzzy,... read more


Favours rocky gulleys in dry, lightly wooded hills and mountains; associated especially with... read more

Food and feeding

Feeds chiefly on grass seeds, augmented by berries in autumn and winter. Young fed with variety of invertebrates, mostly insects and... read more


Nest-building begins immediately on arrival on breeding grounds, in Apr, and eggs reported from very end of Apr, but mostly from mid-May to... read more


Migratory. Begins to arrive on breeding grounds in Apr. Post-breeding departure through first half... read more

Status and conservation

Not globally threatened. Common in appropriate habitat over most of C Asian breeding range. Little evidence of any marked decreases in recent decades. This species’... read more

Recommended citation

Madge, S. (2020). White-capped Bunting (Emberiza stewarti). 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 19 February 2020).