Family Laughingthrushes and allies (Leiotrichidae)

Least Concern

White-crested Laughingthrush (Garrulax leucolophus)


French: Garrulaxe à huppe blanche German: Weißhaubenhäherling Spanish: Charlatán crestiblanco

Corvus leucolophus


, 1816,

mountains above Hardwar, Saharanpur, Uttar Pradesh, India


Formerly treated as conspecific with G. bicolor. Races form two groups, differing in plumage pattern: W nominate and patkaicus, with olive-brown posterior upperparts and clear-cut breast-line, and E belangeri and diardi, with chestnut upperparts (score 2) and more extensive, less well-demarcated white underparts (2); but no differences in voice are apparent on recordings. Name diardi (Feb 1831) has priority over belangeri (Jun 1831, or arguably Aug 1832)#R. Four subspecies recognized.

Subspecies and Distribution
  • G. l. leucolophus (Hardwicke, 1816) – #RWestern White-crested Laughingthrush – S Himachal Pradesh and Nepal E to NE India (Arunachal Pradesh except SE) and adjacent S China (SE Xizang).
  • G. l. patkaicus Reichenow, 1913 – SE Arunachal Pradesh and NE Indian hill states (S of R Brahmaputra), E Bangladesh, Myanmar (except SC, E & SE) and S China (W & SW Yunnan).
  • G. l. belangeri Lesson, 1831 – SC & S Myanmar (including Tenasserim) and W Thailand.
  • G. l. diardi (Lesson, 1831) – Eastern White-crested Laughingthrush – SE Myanmar, NW, NE & SE Thailand, Indochina and S China (S & SE Yunnan).
  • Descriptive notes

    26–31 cm; 108–131 g. Large chestnut-and-brown laughingthrush with white hood, crest and breast and broad black mask; long erectile crown feathers frequently... read more


    Very vociferous. Varied sounds from different flock-members combine to produce sudden, very loud... read more


    Broadleaf evergreen forest and mixed deciduous forest, disturbed, secondary and regenerating forest... read more

    Food and feeding

    Mainly insects, including beetles (of families Buprestidae, Elateridae, Rutelidae, Passalidae and Cerambycidae), and spiders (Araneae),... read more


    Feb–Sept throughout main range; multi-brooded. Co-operative breeder. Nest reportedly a large, shallow, rough cup, made of coarse... read more



    Status and conservation

    Not globally threatened. Generally common. Common and widespread in Nepal. In Bhutan abundant in the Sunkosh, C & E valleys, and in foothills, and present in Thrumshingla... read more

    Recommended citation

    Collar, N. & Robson, C. (2020). White-crested Laughingthrush (Garrulax leucolophus). 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 2020).