Blackish-breasted Babbler Stachyris humei


Justification of Red List Category
This recently split species has been classified as Near Threatened because there are concerns that its potentially small population is in decline owing to the on-going clearance of forest for shifting agriculture.

Population justification
The population is preliminarily suspected to number fewer than 10,000 mature individuals, although this requires study.

Trend justification
The species is suspected to be declining at a slow to moderate rate, owing to logging and habitat degradation due to shifting agriculture.

Distribution and population

Spenocichla humei occurs in extreme eastern Nepal, where it is a rare winter visitor or possibly resident, Sikkim and north-west Bengal, India, east to Bhutan (two recent records) and north-east Arunachal Pradesh, India.


It inhabits the understorey of broadleaf evergreen forest and bamboo at 900-1,950 m, favouring westward facing slopes in Bhutan. It occupies lower elevations only during the winter. It occurs in small parties and feeds on insects, particularly woodlice and boring beetles.


While the high altitudes favoured by this species are relatively free from habitat loss, shifting cultivation and logging are nevertheless reducing forest cover, at least in Bhutan and north-east India.

Conservation actions

Conservation Actions Underway
None are known.

Conservation Actions Proposed
Study its ecological requirements and its tolerance of habitat degradation. Monitor trends in habitat loss. Protect large areas of suitable habitat at key sites, in both strictly protected areas and community-managed multiple use areas.


Text account compilers
Taylor, J., Mahood, S.

Recommended citation
BirdLife International (2020) Species factsheet: Stachyris humei. Downloaded from http://www.birdlife.org on 11/07/2020. Recommended citation for factsheets for more than one species: BirdLife International (2020) IUCN Red List for birds. Downloaded from http://www.birdlife.org on 11/07/2020.