White-throated jungle-flycatcher (Rhinomyias albigularis)

KingdomAnimalia
PhylumChordata
ClassAves
OrderPasseriformes
FamilyMuscicapidae
GenusRhinomyias (1)
SizeSize: 17 cm (2)

Classified as Endangered (EN) on the IUCN Red List 2007 (1).

As implied by its common-name, the most distinctive feature of this otherwise fairly drab brown flycatcher is its prominent white throat (3). While the head and face are olive-brown, upperparts are a slightly warmer, more rufous brown, becoming chestnut on the tail (2) (3). Underparts are generally white, but the white of the throat is separated by a broad greyish olive-brown breast band (2) (3).

Recorded from Negros, Guimaras and Panay in the Western Visayas region of the Philippines, although the last record from Guimaras comes from 1887, and the species is now thought to be extinct there (2).

Found in the shady lower storeys of lowland and lower montane forest, generally below 1,000 metres above sea level, but occasionally up to 1,350 metres (2) (3). Primary forest is preferred but the species has been recorded from secondary growth and even in a tree nursery (2).

This small bird forages in the understorey and lower levels of the forest, usually below 10 metres from the ground and often along forest edges, looking for invertebrates on which to feed, such as beetles, caterpillars and spiders (3) (4).

Very little is known about the reproductive biology of the white-throated jungle-flycatcher, but the breeding season is thought to last at least from March to May. A nest with two partially-incubated eggs was found in late March, a fledgling male was collected in mid-April, four specimens with enlarged gonads were also recorded in April and two males collected in May were labelled as ‘breeding’. A family party consisting of one adult and two juveniles was also observed in August (4). Nests appear to be cup-shaped structures made from moss, plant fibres and rootlets, placed in the cavity of an old tree, several metres from the ground (3).

The white-throated jungle-flycatcher is in grave danger of extinction due to widespread habitat destruction within its lowland range. Forest on Guimaras has long since been cleared, leading to the species extinction on the island, and continued deforestation for shifting cultivation, charcoal production and lumbar extraction threatens what little remains on Negros and Panay (2) (4). Illegal logging and harvesting of forest products, such as tree ferns and rattans, has been a particular problem at Ban-ban, Negros, and, in 1991, forest at the site was considered unlikely to last more than a few years (2).

The white-throated jungle-flycatcher occurs in the tiny (0.5 km²) Sampunong Bolo National Park and two proposed national parks on Panay, one of which contains the largest block of remnant forest in the Western Visayas. On Negros, populations have been recorded in recent years at Mt. Canlaon Natural Park, although, sadly, it is thought little suitable habitat remains within this ‘protected’ site (2).

For more information on the white-throated jungle-flycatcher see:

This information is awaiting authentication by a species expert, and will be updated as soon as possible. If you are able to help please contact:
arkive@wildscreen.org.uk

  1. IUCN Red List (May, 2008)
    http://www.iucnredlist.org
  2. BirdLife International (March, 2007)
    http://www.birdlife.org/datazone/sites/index.html?action=SpcHTMDetails.asp&sid=6484&m=0
  3. del Hoyo, J., Elliott, A. and Sargatal, J. (2006) Handbook of the Birds of the World – Old World Flycatchers to Old World Warblers. Vol. 11. Lynx Edicions, Barcelona.
  4. BirdLife International. (2001) Threatened Birds of Asia: the BirdLife International Red Data Book. BirdLife International, Cambridge, UK.