Mountain White-eye Zosterops japonicus


Taxonomic note
Zosterops japonicus has been split into Z. japonicus and Z. simplex, and Z. montanus has been lumped with the resulting Z. japonicus following detailed work on genetics, morphology and vocalisations (Round et al. 2017, Lim et al. 2019).

Subspecies Z. j. hainanus has been transferred to Z. simplex (Handbook of the Birds of the World 2019, Lim et al. 2019)

Taxonomic source(s)
Handbook of the Birds of the World and BirdLife International. 2019. Handbook of the Birds of the World and BirdLife International digital checklist of the birds of the world. Version 4. Available at:
Lim, B.T., Sadanandan, K.R., Dingle, C., Leung, Y.Y., Prawiradilaga, D.M., Irham, M., Ashari, H., Lee, J.G. & Rheindt, F.E. 2019. Molecular evidence suggests radical revision of species limits in the great speciator white-eye genus Zosterops. Journal of Ornithology 160(1): 1-16.
Round, P. D., Manawattana, S., Khudamrongsawat, J., Thunhikorn, S., Safoowong, M., & Bhummakasikara, T. 2017. Disentangling avian diversity: South-East Asian mainland Oriental White-eye Zosterops palpebrosus constitutes two distinct lineages. Forktail 33: 103-115.

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

Red List history
Year Category Criteria
2019 Least Concern
Species attributes

Migratory status unset Forest dependency unset
Land mass type Average mass -

Estimate Data quality
Extent of Occurrence breeding/resident (km2) 16,300,000
Extent of Occurrence non-breeding (km2) 15,100,000
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 Unknown not applicable -
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 - - -

Population justification: No population estimate has been made, however the species is the result of merging two species that were common in much of their range and so it is likely to have a very large global population.

Trend justification: The population trend of this species is unknown, however it is not thought to be decreasing sufficiently rapidly for the species to be threatened.

Country/territory distribution
Country/Territory Occurrence status Presence Resident Breeding Non-breeding Passage
Indonesia N Extant Yes
Japan N Extant Yes
Philippines N Extant Yes
South Korea N Extant Yes
Timor-Leste N Extant Yes

Important Bird and Biodiversity Areas (IBA)
Country/Territory IBA Name

Habitats & altitude
Habitat (level 1) Habitat (level 2) Importance Occurrence
Artificial/Terrestrial Plantations suitable resident
Artificial/Terrestrial Rural Gardens suitable resident
Forest Subtropical/Tropical Moist Lowland suitable resident
Forest Subtropical/Tropical Moist Montane suitable resident
Forest Temperate suitable resident
Shrubland Subtropical/Tropical High Altitude suitable resident
Shrubland Subtropical/Tropical Moist suitable resident
Altitude 0 - 2660 m Occasional altitudinal limits  

Threats & impact
Threat (level 1) Threat (level 2) Impact and Stresses
Biological resource use Hunting & trapping terrestrial animals - Intentional use (species is the target) Timing Scope Severity Impact
Ongoing Minority (<50%) No decline Low Impact: 4
Species mortality

Purpose Primary form used Life stage used Source Scale Level Timing
Pets/display animals, horticulture - - International Non-trivial Recent

Recommended citation
BirdLife International (2022) Species factsheet: Zosterops japonicus. Downloaded from on 14/08/2022. Recommended citation for factsheets for more than one species: BirdLife International (2022) IUCN Red List for birds. Downloaded from on 14/08/2022.