Family Bulbuls (Pycnonotidae)

Least Concern

Yellow-vented Bulbul (Pycnonotus goiavier)


French: Bulbul goiavier German: Schwarzzügelbülbül Spanish: Bulbul culiamarillo

Muscicapa (Goiavier

) Scopoli

, 1786,

Manila, Luzon, Philippines


SE Asian–Sundaic subspecies and Philippine subspecies form two distinct groups on basis of genetic studies#R#R, which reveal deep mtDNA divergence, combined with clear differences in dawn song#R; may be better treated as two separate species, but further study needed. Proposed race personatus (Sumatra) indistinguishable from analis; similarly, karimuniensis (Karimunjawa I, N of Java) merged with gourdini. Spelling gourdini is a justified emendation of original yourdini. Six subspecies provisionally recognized.

Subspecies and Distribution
  • P. g. jambu Deignan, 1955 – S Myanmar (Tenasserim S from 12.5° N), C & S Thailand, Laos (expanding N along the Mekong and its major tributaries#R), Cambodia and S Vietnam.
  • P. g. analis (Horsfield, 1821) – Sunda Yellow-vented Bulbul – Peninsular Malaysia, Sumatra (including Riau and Lingga Archipelagos, Bangka, Belitung), Java (including Kangean Is), Bali, Lombok and Sumbawa.
  • P. g. gourdini#R G. R. Gray, 1847 – Borneo (including Maratua I, off E coast) and Karimunjawa I (N of Java).
  • P. g. goiavier (Scopoli, 1786) – Philippine Yellow-vented Bulbul – N & C Philippines from Luzon, Polillo Is and Mindoro S, including most smaller islands, to Panay, Guimaras, Negros and Masbate.
  • P. g. samarensis Rand & Rabor, 1960 – C Philippines (Ticao, Samar, Biliran, Buad, Cebu, Olango, Camotes, Leyte, Bohol).
  • P. g. suluensis Mearns, 1909 – S Philippines, from Dinagat, Nipa and Camiguin Sur S to Mindanao (including several offshire islets), Basilan and Sulu Archipelago (East Bolod and West Bolod S to Sanga-Sanga and Bongao).
  • Introduced in S Sulawesi around Ujung Pandang (analis) and, recently, on Buton I (presumed same race).

    Descriptive notes

    19–20·5 cm; 24–37 g. Medium-sized, noisy, conspicuous bulbul with stubby, erectile crest. Nominate race has broad supercilium, crown side, cheeks and throat white... read more


    Song a choppy musical stream of notes, varied and difficult to transcribe. Dawn song relatively... read more


    Coastal scrub, pioneer sea-dune scrub, semi-open banks and shoals of large rivers, scattered bushes... read more

    Food and feeding

    An opportunist and generalist, with very broad foraging niche. Diet primarily fruits, also seeds and nectar; also large quantities of... read more


    Dec–Oct; nests found in all months in tropical regions; multi-brooded. Nest a deep cup, typically of dry grass stems and blades,... read more


    Resident, subject to some dispersive movements. Non-breeding aggregations form, including large... read more

    Status and conservation

    Not globally threatened. Common in SE Asia; first recorded in C Laos, along R Mekong, in 1966, and has since then rapidly spread north, along R Mekong and some major... read more

    Recommended citation

    Fishpool, L., Tobias, J. & de Juana, E. (2020). Yellow-vented Bulbul (Pycnonotus goiavier). 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 January 2020).