Blue jewelbabbler

Ptilorrhoa caerulescens

TAXONOMY

Eupetes caerulescens Temminck, 1835, Lobo, Irian Jaya, Indonesia.

OTHER COMMON NAMES

English: Lowland eupetes; French: Ptilorrhoa bleu; German: Blaufloter; Spanish: Hablantín del Valle.

PHYSICAL CHARACTERISTICS

8.7 in (22 cm); 1.7-2.2 oz (49-61 g). A smaller bird with mostly blue plumage. Black eye stripe from bill to breast, black primaries, and white throat and upper breast.

DISTRIBUTION

P. c. caerulescens: west New Guinea; P. c. neumanni: north New Guinea; P. c. nigricrissa: south New Guinea; P. geislerorum: northeast New Guinea (sometimes regarded as separate species). Lowlands and foothills up to about 990 ft (300 m).

HABITAT

Inhabits wetter forests, such as rainforest, monsoon forest, adjoining tall secondary growth, and gallery forest.

BEHAVIOR

Sedentary and territorial. Usually found in pairs or small groups. Terrestrial, walks daintily along the ground, with a bobbing head. Elusive, occupying areas of low vegetation cover. This species' song is among the more characteristic bird calls of the forest.

FEEDING ECOLOGY AND DIET

Feeds on insects and small invertebrates of the ground litter. When foraging, tosses leaves to aside using the bill.

REPRODUCTIVE BIOLOGY

The cup-shaped nest is placed in a depression in the ground at the base of a tree or between roots. The two eggs are spotted and streaked against a light brownish background. Breeding takes place from the mid dry to early wet season.

CONSERVATION STATUS

Generally common.

SIGNIFICANCE TO HUMANS None known. ♦

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