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Discover the Unique Plumage and Fascinating Behavior of the Cinnamon-headed Green-Pigeon

Birds are one of the most fascinating creatures in the animal kingdom. One particular bird that stands out is the Cinnamon-headed Green-Pigeon, scientifically known as Treron fulvicollis.

These pigeons are widely distributed across Southeast Asia, from Myanmar to Sumatra, and the Philippines. In this article, we will delve deeper into the identification, plumages, and molts of the Cinnamon-headed Green-Pigeon.




The Cinnamon-headed Green-Pigeon is a medium-sized bird with a distinctive coloration. The male has a cinnamon-colored head and neck, a bright green mantle and wings, and a yellowish belly.

The female, on the other hand, has a green head, neck, and back, with a yellowish-green belly. They also have a distinct red eye-ring, with a small black patch around the eye.

Similar Species:

The Cinnamon-headed Green-Pigeon is often mistaken for the Thick-billed Green-Pigeon because of their similar coloration. However, the Thick-billed Green-Pigeon has a larger bill and a darker green coloration.

The Grey-cheeked Green-Pigeon is also often confused with the Cinnamon-headed Green-Pigeon, but the former has grey cheeks and a darker green coloration.


The Cinnamon-headed Green-Pigeon has two plumages – the breeding and non-breeding plumages.

Breeding Plumage:

During breeding season, the male’s overall coloration becomes brighter and more vibrant, with a brighter cinnamon head and a more vivid green body. The female’s breeding plumage is similar to the non-breeding plumage, but with a brighter green coloration.

Non-breeding Plumage:

During the non-breeding season, both male and female have duller colorations, with the head and mantle becoming less bright and more brownish in color compared to the breeding season.


The Cinnamon-headed Green-Pigeon undergoes two molts per year – the pre-basic molt and the pre-alternate molt. Pre-basic Molt:

The pre-basic molt usually occurs before the breeding season.

During this time, the birds shed and renew their feathers, preparing for the upcoming breeding season. The male’s plumage becomes brighter, while the female’s plumage remains the same.

Pre-alternate Molt:

The pre-alternate molt occurs during the non-breeding season. During this time, both males and females renew their feathers to prepare them for the next breeding season.


The Cinnamon-headed Green-Pigeon is truly a remarkable bird with its unique coloration and distinctive features. It’s often mistaken for other species with similar colorations, but with a keen eye for detail, it can easily be identified.

This bird’s plumages and molts showcase the uniqueness of each individual bird and their preparation for each upcoming breeding season. It is important to appreciate and protect these beautiful birds and their habitats to ensure their survival for future generations to witness their remarkable beauty.


Systematics History

The Cinnamon-headed Green-Pigeon, also known as Treron fulvicollis, belongs to the family Columbidae. The history of this bird’s placement in the avian classification system is not very clear.

However, there have been recent updates regarding its taxonomical classification.

Geographic Variation

The Cinnamon-headed Green-Pigeon has a wide geographic distribution, found in several countries in Southeast Asia, including Indonesia, Malaysia, Thailand, Vietnam, and the Philippines. These birds inhabit forests, woodlands, and gardens, particularly in lowlands.


The Cinnamon-headed Green-Pigeon has three recognized subspecies:

1. Treron fulvicollis sclateri: Found in northern Sumatra and the Batu Islands.

These birds are generally slightly larger and have a more extensive cinnamon cap and collar.


Treron fulvicollis ambiguum: Found in southern Thailand, the Malay Peninsula, and parts of Sumatra. These birds are slightly smaller and have a narrower cinnamon cap and collar.

3. Treron fulvicollis fulvicollis: Found in Borneo, Java, and Bali.

These birds have a bright green body, a narrow, yellowish belly, and are slightly larger than subspecies ambiguum.

Related Species

The Cinnamon-headed Green-Pigeon belongs to the genus Treron, which is composed of about 23 species of pigeons distributed throughout Southeast Asia and parts of the Indian subcontinent. Some of the closely related species to the Cinnamon-headed Green-Pigeon include the Thick-billed Green-Pigeon (Treron curvirostra), Grey-cheeked Green-Pigeon (Treron griseicauda), and the Blue-crowned Green-Pigeon (Treron coronatus).

Historical Changes to Distribution

The Cinnamon-headed Green-Pigeon has been recorded throughout Southeast Asia over the years. However, their distribution has changed over time.

In Indonesia, the species has been observed on the islands of Sumatra, Java, Bali, and other smaller islands. The range of this species in Malaysia has also decreased significantly over the years.

The primary cause of the decline in the distribution range is habitat loss and fragmentation resulting from human activities, such as deforestation, mining, and urbanization. The birds’ feeding and nesting habitats have been destroyed or damaged in many areas, resulting in a decline in their population.

In the Philippines, the Cinnamon-headed Green-Pigeon is considered threatened, with their distribution declining over the years due to habitat loss and hunting. The birds are also hunted for their meat and feathers.

In Thailand, the species continues to decline, with the bird facing threats from hunting and habitat loss due to commercial agriculture and logging. Despite legal protection, hunting remains a significant threat to this species.

In recent times, conservation efforts have been made to preserve the Cinnamon-headed Green-Pigeon. These efforts include protected area management, habitat restoration, and education initiatives.

In addition, there is a need to monitor the bird’s population through surveys and studies to inform conservation strategies.


The Cinnamon-headed Green-Pigeon is a unique bird that inhabits several countries in Southeast Asia. While their distribution range has decreased over time due to human activities, there are ongoing efforts to preserve their population.

Continued research and conservation efforts are necessary to ensure the survival of this beautiful bird and its habitat for future generations. .


The Cinnamon-headed Green-Pigeon is a bird that inhabits tropical and subtropical forests, lowlands, woodlands, gardens, and parks. They are distributed in countries such as Indonesia, Malaysia, Thailand, Vietnam, and the Philippines.

The bird’s preferred habitat is the primary lowland forest, where they feed on various fruits and berries. These areas provide them with a diverse array of flora to feed on.

The birds also inhabit secondary forests, where they feed on fruits and flowers of a smaller range of plants. In Malaysia, the Cinnamon-headed Green-Pigeon prefers wetlands, mixed gardens, and orchards as their habitat.

They are usually found in areas with dense tree cover, providing them with the necessary shelter and food source.

Movements and Migration

The Cinnamon-headed Green-Pigeon is not known to be a long-distance migrant. However, they make seasonal movements within their habitat, depending on the availability of food.

During the non-breeding season, the birds tend to move into lower elevation areas where there is a higher abundance of fruiting trees and shrubs. During the breeding season, the birds typically move to areas with a higher abundance of flowering plants.

In Malaysia, the bird’s movements can be attributed to the fruiting season of their preferred food sources. They tend to move to different locations within their range, depending on the fruiting season of their preferred tree species.

For example, when one particular tree species is fruiting in a specific area, the birds will move to that area to feed. During the dry season, when food becomes scarce elsewhere, the Cinnamon-headed Green-Pigeon tends to stay close to its preferred fruiting trees in wetland areas.

In the Philippines, the bird is a resident species, meaning they do not migrate to other locations. However, some local movements occur in response to fruit availability.

While the Cinnamon-headed Green-Pigeon is not known to be a long-distance migrant, it has been reported on occasions outside its usual range. Such occurrences can usually be attributed to unusual weather patterns or unusual fruiting of trees in areas beyond its usual range.


The Cinnamon-headed Green-Pigeon prefers to inhabit tropical and subtropical forests, lowlands, woodlands, gardens, and parks. They make seasonal movements within their habitats, depending on the availability of fruits and flowers.

While they are not known for long-distance migration, they make local movements within their range in response to food availability. The conservation of their habitats is essential to ensure their survival and continued presence in Southeast Asia.


Diet and Foraging

The Cinnamon-headed Green-Pigeon is a frugivorous bird, meaning they have a diet that largely consists of fruits and berries. Their fruit-based diet provides them with the necessary nutrients required for optimal growth and reproductive success.


When feeding, the birds are known to sit upright on branches and pick fruits using their beaks. They often use one foot to support their body and the other foot to hold onto the branch while feeding.

They also use their beaks to pluck fruits from trees, or they can catch fruits in the air or while in flight. The Cinnamon-headed Green-Pigeon does not forage on the ground, unlike its cousin species, the pigeons and doves.

They tend to forage in trees, picking fruits between the foliage using their specialized beaks. When there is an abundance of fruit, they tend to remain in one location for some time.


The bird’s main diet comprises various types of fleshy fruits, which include figs, berries, and a wide range of other fruits. They also feed on fruits that are not completely ripe.

They can break up larger fruits with their beaks to eat flesh. While fruits make up the bulk of the bird’s diet, they also feed on flowers, leaves, and seeds on occasion.

The Cinnamon-headed Green-Pigeon requires water for drinking, but they can also get moisture from fruit pulp.

Metabolism and Temperature Regulation

The Cinnamon-headed Green-Pigeon, like all birds, has a high metabolic rate, which is required for efficient energy expenditure and body temperature regulation. They also possess physiological mechanisms to regulate their body temperature, including panting, fluffing of feathers, and secretion of liquid from the mouth.

The bird’s high metabolic rate allows for efficient digestion of fruits, which has allowed it to specialize in feeding on fruits. They also have a relatively low water requirement, owing to their ability to extract water from their fruit diet.

Sounds and Vocal


The Cinnamon-headed Green-Pigeon is a vocal bird, with a wide range of sounds and vocalizations in their repertoire.


The bird has a unique and distinctive call, with a high-pitched whistle that sounds like “woii-wii.” The call is typically repeated several times in a sequence, and it is often heard when the bird is perched on a tree or in flight. The male bird also has a unique mating call, which is composed of multiple notes, followed by a descending cooing sound.

The call is typically heard during the breeding season when males are looking to attract females. In addition to their calls, the Cinnamon-headed Green-Pigeon also makes various sounds during courtship, such as bill clapping and wing flapping.

These sounds are often associated with the male’s courtship display, which includes fluttering of the wings and puffing up of the feathers.


The Cinnamon-headed Green-Pigeon is a frugivorous bird that relies largely on fruit for nourishment. They have a unique feeding style and diet, which allows them to specialize in feeding on fruits.

The bird’s metabolic rate is high, allowing them to efficiently extract nutrients from their fruit diet and regulate their body temperature. The Cinnamon-headed Green-Pigeon is also a highly vocal bird, with a range of distinctive and unique vocalizations.



The Cinnamon-headed Green-Pigeon is a behavioral bird species with distinct locomotion, self-maintenance, agonistic, and sexual behavior.


The bird spends most of its time perched on tree branches, where it feeds and rests. They rarely walk or hop on the ground like other pigeon species.

Cinnamon-headed Green-Pigeons are agile fliers, with swift, direct flights through the trees. They are graceful flyers, and their flight is characterized by a series of flaps, followed by a brief glide.

During flight, they produce a whistling or buzzing noise with their fast, shallow wingbeats.

Self Maintenance

Like all birds, self-maintenance is an essential behavior for the Cinnamon-headed Green-Pigeon. The bird spends hours a day preening its feathers, removing dirt and parasites.

They also spend time sunbathing, which helps to dry out any moisture that remains stuck to their feathers after preening. Agonistic


The Cinnamon-headed Green-Pigeon demonstrates agonistic behavior, which mainly occurs during the breeding season or when defending their territories.

Males use wing feathers and bill clapping to defend territories and may get into fights with competing males.

When a male bird is confronted by another male bird, they typically fluff up their feathers and move in an intimidating manner.

They may also stretch out their necks and flick their tails as a sign of aggression. Sexual


The sexual behavior of the Cinnamon-headed Green-Pigeon is primarily observed during the breeding season.

During this time, males perform courtship displays to attract a mate. The displays are often elaborate and involve fluttering of the wings, puffing up of feathers, and performing a unique call.

Once courtship is successful, the male and female pair up and spend most of their time together. The male will continue to perform courtship displays to reaffirm the pair bond.


The breeding season for the Cinnamon-headed Green-Pigeon varies depending on the location. The males compete for the attention of females by performing elaborate courtship displays.

Once a pair bond is formed, the female will search for nesting locations and may even use previously abandoned nests.

The female lays a single egg, which is incubated by both males and females for approximately 16 to 19 days.

The chick is born blind with yellow down feathers and is fed regurgitated fruit by the parents. The chick will remain in the nest for up to three weeks before fledging.

While the breeding season can differ depending on the location, some areas experience two breeding seasons annually.

Demography and Populations

The Cinnamon-headed Green-Pigeon, like most bird species, experiences fluctuations in population depending on several factors. The primary threats facing the bird include habitat loss due to deforestation, hunting, and predation by other bird species.

In areas where the bird still common, such as Malaysia, local conservation initiatives are in place to ensure their survival, including protected habitat areas and education efforts. However, in areas where the bird’s population has declined, such as the Philippines, there are concerns about the bird’s continued survival.

While some areas have experienced decline in population, the Cinnamon-headed Green-Pigeon is not considered a globally threatened species, with the current population assessed as being stable. Continued monitoring of the bird’s population is essential, along with conservation efforts to ensure their continued presence in Southeast Asia.


The Cinnamon-headed Green-Pigeon is a unique bird species with distinct behavior patterns. Their self-maintenance habits, locomotion, agonistic, and sexual behavior are all specific to their species.

The bird’s breeding habits have been observed, along with variations in behavior depending on locations. The primary threats to the bird’s survival remain habitat loss and hunting, although local conservation efforts help ensure their survival in some areas.

The monitoring and conservation of this bird’s population will remain essential to ensure its survival for future generations. The Cinnamon-headed Green-Pigeon is a remarkable bird species found in Southeast Asia.

This bird specializes in a fruit-based diet and is highly adapted to its environment. Their unique plumage, behavior, and vocalizations have made it an interesting subject of study for ornithologists.

Despite the challenges posed by habitat loss and hunting, there are efforts being made to preserve their habitats and conserve their population. Continued monitoring and research is essential to ensure the survival of this remarkable and important bird species and its habitats for future generations to appreciate and enjoy.

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