Red-crowned Barbet Psilopogon rafflesii


Justification of Red List Category
This species occurs in lowland evergreen forest in a region in which deforestation is occurring at a rapid rate. It is therefore likely to be undergoing a moderately rapid population decline, and should be monitored carefully. On this basis it is considered Near Threatened, but is not regarded as more threatened owing to its tolerance of some modified habitats.

Population justification
The population size of this species has not been quantified; it is considered scarce to common throughout its range.

Trend justification
A moderately rapid population decline is suspected to be on-going as a result of continuing forest loss and degradation across the species's range.

Distribution and population

This species is confined to the Sundaic lowlands of south Tenasserim, Myanmar, peninsular Thailand, Sabah, Sarawak and Peninsular Malaysia, Singapore, Kalimantan and Sumatra, Indonesia and Brunei (BirdLife International 2001).


This species occurs in primary lowland evergreen forest up to 800 m asl. It is also found in tall secondary forest, poor-quality Dipterocarp slope forest and occasionally in rubber plantations.


Rates of forest loss in the Sundaic lowlands have been extremely rapid, owing partly to the escalation of illegal logging and land conversion, with deliberate targeting of all remaining stands of valuable timber including those inside protected areas. Forest fires have also had a damaging effect (particularly in 1997-1998). The magnitude of these threats may be allayed by this species's tolerance of secondary and slope forest, although further studies are required to determine whether this species can genuinely persist in these habitats in the absence of adjacent primary habitat. This species may be traded locally as a cagebird, though this is not as rampant as for other songbird species (Jihad, Burung Indonesia in litt. 2016).

Conservation actions

Conservation Actions Underway
No targeted conservation actions are known for this species, although it occurs in a number of protected areas.

Conservation Actions Proposed
Conduct repeated surveys across the species's range to determine the magnitude of declines and rates of range contraction. Conduct ecological studies to determine precise habitat requirements, tolerance of secondary habitats and response to fragmentation. Campaign for the protection of remaining tracts of lowland forest throughout the species's range.


Text account compilers
Benstead, P., Taylor, J., Westrip, J., Gilroy, J.


Recommended citation
BirdLife International (2022) Species factsheet: Psilopogon rafflesii. Downloaded from http://www.birdlife.org on 09/12/2022. Recommended citation for factsheets for more than one species: BirdLife International (2022) IUCN Red List for birds. Downloaded from http://www.birdlife.org on 09/12/2022.