Family Laughingthrushes and allies (Leiotrichidae)

Least Concern

White-headed Babbler (Turdoides leucocephala)


French: Cratérope à tête blanche German: Weißkopf-Schwatzhäherling Spanish: Turdoide cabeciblanco
Other common names: Cretzschmar's Babbler

Turdoides leucocephala


, 1826,

Sennar = Blue Nile Province, Sudan


Sometimes treated as conspecific with either T. plebejus or T. jardineii. Monotypic.


SE & E Sudan, NW Ethiopia and N Eritrea.

Descriptive notes

22–25 cm. Medium-sized greyish-brown Turdoides babbler with white hood and black bill. Head and chin are off-white, cleanly defined from nape and throat, but... read more


Noisy. Chorus song, given by birds sitting closely side by side on branch, a loud “waak-waak-waak... read more


Dense riverine scrub and dry acacia woodland, mainly below 1000 m, but extending up to 1475 m.

Food and feeding

Only “insects” reported. Lives in parties of 5–6 individuals, occasionally up to twelve together.


May–Jun in Ethiopia. No other information.



Status and conservation

Not globally threatened. Uncommon to fairly common in Sudan; frequent in Ethiopia and Eritrea.

Recommended citation

Collar, N. & Robson, C. (2020). White-headed Babbler (Turdoides leucocephala). 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 26 February 2020).