The Indochinese green magpie (yellow-breasted magpie – Cissa hypoleuca) is a passerine bird of the crow family, Corvidae. It is native to mainland southeast Asia (Indochina) and adjacent China. This species is listed in The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2016: e.T22705813A94036926 by BirdLife International.
Indochinese green magpie in natural habitat
Yellow-breasted magpie is a loud, fluorescent green bird of tropical evergreen forests. With 5 subspecies currently recognized. This species usually found in 2-3 individual in flocks. Adult with some ID:
- Fairly long body sharpe, graduated tail, slightly shaggy rear crown, rather prominent bill .
- Green, yellow and red colours of plumage bleach to, respectively, dull light blue, whitish and brown if exposed to prolonged bright sunlight.
- Nominate race has prominent black band running from base of bill backwards across side of head, enclosing eye and crossing under slight crest on nape;
- Rest of head, upperparts, scapulars, lesser upperwing-coverts and upperside of tail green, remainder of wing reddish-chestnut, tertials prominently tipped pale green, outer tail feathers with black subterminal chevron and pale grey tip;
- Throat to undertail-coverts strongly washed with lemon-yellow, darker green visible at sides of throat and breast and merging with darker green of upperparts (thus, marked contrast between upperparts and underparts);
- With wear, plumage bleaches to light blue, with pale brown wings;
- Iris dark brown, crimson orbital ring (in excitement can be inflated into small horn-like wattle);
- Bill crimson to orange-red, often whitish at very tip;
- Legs bright red to orange-red.
Despite bright colors, can be difficult to see in the canopy. Also, it is most easily seen as it sails through gaps in the foliage. Vocalizations incorporate ringing whistles, rasping notes, screeches, and noisy chattering.
Where to watch?
Birders can find Indochinese green magpie – Yellow-breasted magpie while being on bird watching trips in Vietnam at these locations:
- Cat Tien National Parl (Sub: Cissa hypoleuca hypoleuca)
- Da Lat plateau (Sub: Cissa hypoleuca hypoleuca)
- Phong Nha – Ke Bang National Park (Sub: Cissa hypoleuca hypoleuca)
- Bach Ma Kon Tum plateau (Sub: Cissa hypoleuca hypoleuca)
- Cuc Phuong National Park (Sub: Cissa hypoleuca hypoleuca)
In order to find this species, we recommend our customers to spend at least 3 days birding in Cat Tien National Park. For best experience, 5 days birding, bird watching photography in Cat Tien National Park and Di Linh Plateau is highly recommended.