Blue-masked Leafbird Chloropsis venusta


Justification of Red List category
This species is thought to have experienced a moderately rapid decline which is likely to continue owing to ongoing loss and degradation of forest within its restricted altitudinal range. As a result, it is classified as Near Threatened. However, as the species is already considered generally uncommon, evidence of declines and local extinctions coupled with targeting for the cagebird trade may suggest that it could warrant uplisting in the future.

Population justification
The population size is unknown, but the species is described as generally rather uncommon to sparse (del Hoyo et al. 2006).

Trend justification
This species has probably declined owing to loss of forest at the lower margin of its altitudinal range, restricting it to higher elevations, and potentially as a result of capture for trade.

Distribution and population

This species is restricted to the hills and lower montane areas of Sumatra, Indonesia, occurring throughout the uplands that run along the western spine of the island.


It inhabits hill and lower montane evergreen forest at 600-1,500 m. It also occurs in well-regenerated secondary growth and at the forest-edge. It feeds on fruit, seeds and arthropods.


It is judged to be generally uncommon and sparse but forest loss on lower slopes is reducing the lower elevation ranges of several rare Sumatran endemics, and is likely to be causing a decline in this species also (BirdLife International 2001, Wells 2005). Considered to be less of a target for bird trappers than Greater Green Leafbird (C. sonnerati), the species has been recorded in markets in Sumatra, which is a cause for concern given its relatively restricted range on the island. However, the elevational range of the species contains a large extent of the more difficult to access parts of Sumatra and there does not appear to be any data indicating local extinctions as yet, nor data indicating increases in market price.

Conservation actions

Conservation Actions Underway
None are known.

Conservation Actions Proposed
Assess the rate of forest loss within its altitudinal range using remote sensing techniques. Assess the impacts of the cagebird trade on this species. Ensure that adequate areas of lower montane forest are protected within its range.


Text account compilers
Hermes, C., Martin, R., Benstead, P., Taylor, J., Bird, J.

Recommended citation
BirdLife International (2023) Species factsheet: Chloropsis venusta. Downloaded from http://datazone.birdlife.org/species/factsheet/blue-masked-leafbird-chloropsis-venusta on 03/10/2023. Recommended citation for factsheets for more than one species: BirdLife International (2023) IUCN Red List for birds. Downloaded from http://datazone.birdlife.org on 03/10/2023.