Arabian Babbler Argya squamiceps


Taxonomic note

Argya squamiceps (del Hoyo and Collar 2016) was previously listed as Turdoides squamiceps.

Taxonomic source(s)
AERC TAC. 2003. AERC TAC Checklist of bird taxa occurring in Western Palearctic region, 15th Draft. Available at: # _the_WP15.xls#.
Cramp, S. and Simmons, K.E.L. (eds). 1977-1994. Handbook of the birds of Europe, the Middle East and Africa. The birds of the western Palearctic. Oxford University Press, Oxford.
del Hoyo, J., Collar, N.J., Christie, D.A., Elliott, A., Fishpool, L.D.C., Boesman, P. and Kirwan, G.M. 2016. HBW and BirdLife International Illustrated Checklist of the Birds of the World. Volume 2: Passerines. Lynx Edicions and BirdLife International, Barcelona, Spain and Cambridge, UK.

IUCN Red list criteria met and history
Red List criteria met
Critically Endangered Endangered Vulnerable
- - -

Red List history
Year Category Criteria
2018 Least Concern
2016 Least Concern
2012 Least Concern
2009 Least Concern
2008 Least Concern
2004 Least Concern
2000 Lower Risk/Least Concern
1994 Lower Risk/Least Concern
1988 Lower Risk/Least Concern
Species attributes

Migratory status not a migrant Forest dependency Does not normally occur in forest
Land mass type Average mass -

Estimate Data quality
Extent of Occurrence breeding/resident (km2) 3,300,000
Number of locations -
Severely Fragmented -
Population and trend
Value Data quality Derivation Year of estimate
No. of mature individuals unknown not applicable not applicable 0
Population trend Increasing suspected -
Decline (3 years/1 generation past) - - -
Decline (5 years/1 generation past) - - -
Decline (10 years/1 generation past) - - -
Decline (10 years/3 generation future) - - -
Decline (10 years/3 generation past and future) - - -
Number of subpopulations - - -
Percentage in largest subpopulation - - -
Generation length (yrs) 8.8 - - -

Population justification: The global population size has not been quantified, but the species is described as locally common Israel (del Hoyo et al. 2007).

Trend justification: The population is suspected to be increasing as ongoing human colonisation and agricultural expansion is creating new areas of suitable habitat (del Hoyo et al. 2007).

Country/territory distribution
Country/Territory Occurrence status Presence Resident Breeding Non-breeding Passage
Egypt N Extant Yes
Israel N Extant Yes
Jordan N Extant Yes
Oman N Extant Yes
Palestine N Extant Yes
Saudi Arabia N Extant Yes
United Arab Emirates N Extant Yes
Yemen N Extant Yes

Important Bird and Biodiversity Areas (IBA)
Country/Territory IBA Name
Egypt Quseima
Egypt Wadi Gerafi
United Arab Emirates Qarn Nazwa
United Arab Emirates Digdaga - Hamraniyah
United Arab Emirates Masafi - Tayibah area
United Arab Emirates Mushrif Park
Israel Judean desert
Israel Northern Arava valley
Israel Cliffs of Zin and the Negev highlands
Israel Southern Arava valley and Elat mountains
Jordan Wadi Mujib
Jordan Dana
Jordan Wadi Araba
Jordan Hisma Basin - Rum
Jordan Aqaba coast and mountains
Palestine Jericho
Palestine Jerusalem wilderness
Yemen Ma'rib - Naqil Fardah - Baraqish
Jordan Petra
Saudi Arabia Jabal al-Lawz
Saudi Arabia Jabal Aja and Northern Ha'il
Saudi Arabia Hawtat Bani Tamim
Saudi Arabia Mahazat as-Sayd
Saudi Arabia National Wildlife Research Center and environs, Taif
Saudi Arabia Wadi Turabah and Jabal Ibrahim
Saudi Arabia Shallal ad-Dahna
Saudi Arabia Al-Habrow al-Arabi
Saudi Arabia Jabal Fayfa
Saudi Arabia Wadi Jawwah
United Arab Emirates Dubai Desert
United Arab Emirates Al Marmoom Desert
Yemen Kawkaban - Shibam
Yemen Al-Kadan area
Yemen Jabal Bura
Yemen Jabal Sumarah
Yemen Ta'izz wadis
Yemen Mafraq al-Mukha
Yemen Desert west of Al-Ghayda
Yemen Hiswat al-Hugayma
Yemen Al-Mukha - Al-Khawkhah
Jordan Maghtas - Sweimeh
Yemen Hawf deciduous cloud forest
United Arab Emirates Wadi Wurayah

Habitats & altitude
Habitat (level 1) Habitat (level 2) Importance Occurrence
Artificial/Terrestrial Arable Land suitable resident
Artificial/Terrestrial Plantations suitable resident
Artificial/Terrestrial Rural Gardens suitable resident
Grassland Subtropical/Tropical Dry suitable resident
Marine Intertidal Salt Marshes (Emergent Grasses) suitable resident
Shrubland Subtropical/Tropical Dry suitable resident
Altitude 0 - 2800 m Occasional altitudinal limits  

Recommended citation
BirdLife International (2022) Species factsheet: Argya squamiceps. Downloaded from on 06/07/2022. Recommended citation for factsheets for more than one species: BirdLife International (2022) IUCN Red List for birds. Downloaded from on 06/07/2022.