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Fascinating Banded Broadbills: From Colorful Plumage to Intriguing Breeding Behavior

Birds have always been fascinating creatures that captivate the eye and the imagination. With their unique features, interesting habits, and captivating personalities, birds have been a subject of study and admiration for centuries.

In this article, we will focus on the Banded Broadbill bird species, its identification and plumages, and what distinguishes it from similar species.Banded Broadbills, also known as Eurylaimus javanicus, are a species of passerine birds found in Southeast Asia. These birds are known for their striking colorful features, making them easily identifiable in their natural habitats.

Banded Broadbills are generally medium-sized birds, with an average length of 18-19cm, and weigh between 20-25g.


Banded Broadbills are easily identifiable because of their distinct plumages and features. These birds have a grayish-black crown with a white streak above the eyes.

The bill is black, short, and curved downwards with the base of the lower mandible light blue. These birds have a prominent black eyestripe that runs from the bill to the back of the ear-coverts, and a reddish-orange throat that fades into a yellow-orange chest.

The wings and back are mostly green with a black band that runs from the upper back to the wings. The tail is also green, and the central feathers are elongated and stiff, ending in a curved tip.

The legs and feet are pale blue-gray. The juveniles look similar to adults, but the colors are not as vibrant, and the band on the upper back is not as distinct.

The female Banded Broadbill is generally duller than the male, with less vibrant colors and smaller bills. Field


Banded Broadbills are most commonly found in the thick forests of Southeast Asia, particularly in Thailand, Indonesia, and Malaysia.

They are active during the day and are commonly seen flying among the trees and bushes in search of insects, their primary source of food. To identify the Banded Broadbill in the field, look for a medium-sized bird with a prominent black eyestripe, a reddish-orange throat, and a yellow-orange chest.

Look for a broad, black band that runs from the upper back to the wings, and note the green coloration of the wings and tail.

Similar Species

There are several species of broadbills that may be confused with the Banded Broadbill. The Black-and-red Broadbill, also found in Southeast Asia, is similar in size and shape but has a more prominent red patch on its belly.

The Dusky Broadbill is another species that resembles the Banded Broadbill, but it lacks the black band that runs across the upper back and onto the wings.


Banded Broadbills have unique plumage that makes them attractive and noticeable. These birds undergo two molts a year, with their breeding plumage being more vibrant and colorful.

During breeding season, their bills and legs become brighter, with the blue coloration becoming more intense. The yellow-orange chest becomes brighter, and the black band on their back becomes more distinct.

The non-breeding plumage, however, is less colourful, with a duller bill and less vibrant coloration on the chest and throat. The band on the upper back is usually not as distinct.


Banded Broadbills, like other passerine birds, go through two molts annually. The first molt takes place after breeding season, and the second occurs before the next breeding season.

During molting, feathers are replaced with new ones, and this process can take up to six to twelve weeks to complete. It’s during this time that birds are most vulnerable to predators, making them cautious and less conspicuous.


Banded Broadbills are an interesting bird species with unique features that make them easily identifiable in their natural habitats. Their colorful plumage, distinct black band, and vibrant bill and legs make them a sight to behold.

It’s important to note the identification features and distinguish them from similar species like Black-and-red Broadbills and Dusky Broadbills. Understanding their molting habits and plumages can also turn your bird watching experience into an exciting and educational journey.

Banded Broadbills, also known as Eurylaimus javanicus, are a passerine bird species that inhabit the thick forests of Southeast Asia, particularly in Thailand, Indonesia, and Malaysia. These birds are known for their striking colorful features, making them easily identifiable in their natural habitats.

In this article, we will delve into the systematics history of the Banded Broadbills, their geographic variation, subspecies, related species and changes to their distribution over time.

Systematics History

The Banded Broadbill was first described by Temminck in 1824 as Eurylaimus javanicus, with its type locality in Java, Indonesia. Since then, the taxonomy and nomenclature of these birds have undergone multiple changes.

In the past, Banded Broadbills were considered to be a single species within the broadbill family Eurylaimidae. However, with the advent of molecular techniques, they were found to be part of a complex of six species within the genus Eurylaimus.

Geographic Variation

Banded Broadbills exhibit geographic variation across their range. The birds found in Sumatra have brighter and more extensive orange-yellow on the chest and throat than those found in the Malay Peninsula.

The birds in Borneo have a shorter wing, and the chestnut band on the wings is broader. Within their limited range, Banded Broadbills appear to have a degree of genetic variation, with the populations being somewhat isolated.


There are eight subspecies of Banded Broadbills currently recognized, with differences in physical characteristics and distribution. The subspecies vary in their geographic location, plumage, and size.

For example, Eurylaimus javanicus javanicus can be found in Java and Bali, with a distinctive reddish-orange throat. Eurylaimus javanicus lucifer, on the other hand, is found in southeastern Thailand and peninsular Malaysia, with a smaller size and less vibrant plumage compared to the other subspecies.

Related Species

The Banded Broadbill is part of a complex of six species within the genus Eurylaimus, including the Black-and-red Broadbill, Black-and-yellow Broadbill, Dusky Broadbill, Long-tailed Broadbill, and Silver-breasted Broadbill. These birds can be found within the same geographic range as the Banded Broadbill.

However, their physical appearance and vocalizations help distinguish them from one another. For example, the Black-and-yellow Broadbill has a black head and bright yellow underparts, while the Dusky Broadbill has a distinctive black vent.

Historical Changes to Distribution

Historically, Banded Broadbills were thought to have a larger distribution and could be found in places such as Singapore, the Philippines, and other regions of Indonesia. However, with deforestation and habitat loss, the distribution of these birds has shrunk significantly.

As a result, they are now largely confined to specific forested areas within their current range. The Banded Broadbill is classified as a species of Least Concern by the International Union for

Conservation of Nature (IUCN).

However, their population is declining due to the destruction of forested habitats and the expansion of urbanization and agriculture. In conclusion, the systematics history, geographic variation, subspecies, related species, and changes to distribution are all important aspects of the study and conservation of the Banded Broadbill.

Understanding these factors helps researchers and bird enthusiasts better appreciate and protect these beautiful birds. It is imperative that we continue to monitor the population of Banded Broadbills and their natural habitats to ensure their survival in the future.

Banded Broadbills, or Eurylaimus javanicus, are small passerine birds that are known for their striking and colorful plumage. These birds prefer lowland and hill forests and are typically found in the dense undergrowth, where they hunt for insects.

In this article, we will explore the habitat of Banded Broadbills, their movements, and any migration patterns observed in these birds.


Banded Broadbills inhabit a range of forest types, including lowland primary and secondary forests, old-growth forests, flooded forests, swamp forests, and logged forests. They prefer dense undergrowth and shaded areas, often found in forested areas with a closed canopy.

Their distribution ranges from southern Thailand, Peninsular Malaysia, Sumatra, to Borneo, Java, and Bali. These birds are usually found in altitudes of up to 1,000 meters, but they have been observed in areas as high as 2,000 meters above sea level.

They are also known to use man-made habitats such as rubber plantations, although with lower densities. Banded Broadbills are particularly sensitive to habitat loss and degradation, and as such, are susceptible to the effects of logging and deforestation, making their conservation a priority.


Banded Broadbills are non-migratory. However, they may change their movements based on food availability or seasonal changes in their habitat.

During the breeding season, they are more territorial and likely to defend their territories against intruders. Banded Broadbills are generally sedentary, but they have been known to make brief seasonal movements in search of food.

Interestingly, unlike other birds, the Banded Broadbill is reported to be a reverse latitudinal migrant, moving from places closer to the equator to the north and west during the non-breeding period. They move to more open habitats such as rubber plantations where they can find food.

This movement is more common in the northern part of their range, where there is a more significant effect of seasonal monsoons leading to changes in forest growth and food availability.


Banded Broadbills are non-migratory, but some populations tend to move from more densely forested areas during the non-breeding season to open habitats in search of food. The movement is known to take place within the species’ range and is not consistent annually.

These seasonal movements are driven by food availability and changes in the surrounding habitat. It is, however, worth noting that Banded Broadbills face habitat loss and degradation, which could affect their survival in the long term, leading to such movements to less favorable habitats.


Banded Broadbills, like many other bird species, face habitat loss and degradation due to several anthropogenic activities such as forest logging, agricultural expansion, and palm oil plantations. To mitigate the effects of habitat loss, there is a need for habitat restoration and protection.

Proper land-use planning, together with community-based forest management approaches, can help promote sustainable development while ensuring the protection of crucial habitats. Additionally, efforts to reduce the trade and consumption of the Banded Broadbill are essential to their conservation.

The bird is being increasingly traded, leading to severe population declines, especially in Indonesia and Malaysia. As such, it is listed as a protected species under CITES, and there is an urgent need for stronger legislation and better enforcement of existing laws to ensure their protection and conservation at large.


Banded Broadbills are fascinating birds that live in Southeast Asia’s lush forests and are highly sensitive to habitat loss and degradation. These birds prefer dense forest undergrowth and often move to open habitats during non-breeding seasons.

As with many other birds, habitat loss and degradation remain a significant threat to their survival. Understanding the movements and habitat requirements of the Banded Broadbill is critical to their conservation.

Efforts to protect and conserve their habitats and address the trade and consumption of these birds are vital for their long-term survival. Banded Broadbills, or Eurylaimus javanicus, are small passerine birds that inhabit the Southeast Asian forest ecosystems.

These birds are known for their strikingly colorful plumage and foraging habits. In this article, we will explore the diet and foraging habits of Banded Broadbills and their vocal behavior.

Diet and Forage

Banded Broadbills are insectivores and feed primarily on small insects, spiders, and other arthropods. Their diet consists mostly of beetles, caterpillars, ants, termites, crickets, grasshoppers, and stick insects.

They also supplement their diet with fruits and berries, often by gleaning them from the trees and bushes around their habitat.


Banded Broadbills are active foragers that search for prey in the thick undergrowth. They use their short, curved bills to pick up and crush their prey, using their tongues to dislodge their food from crevices.

Banded Broadbills also hunt for insects on tree trunks and branches, which they climb about with ease.

These birds prefer to hunt in pairs or small groups.

They work in a coordinated fashion to search for prey, using their distinctive short and direct flight to move from one branch to another. The hunting style appears opportunistic, with the birds often catching insects on the wing.


Banded Broadbills, like most insectivores, have a high metabolic rate and require a diet high in protein and fat. Their diet varies according to the season and the abundance of their prey.

During the breeding season, Banded Broadbills are known to forage for insects with higher fat content to support their reproductive functions. In contrast, during the non-breeding period, they are more likely to consume fruits and supplements to maintain their health.

Metabolism and Temperature Regulation

Banded Broadbills have a high metabolic rate, which enables them to move quickly and forage actively. However, this metabolic demand also makes them susceptible to high temperatures.

Banded Broadbills have developed several ways to regulate their body temperature. One such way is by fluffing out their feathers, which exposes a larger surface area to the surrounding air and increases air circulation.

They also pant, expelling heat through their mouths as they exhale. Furthermore, Banded Broadbills are known to engage in self-shading.

They press their bodies against shaded objects, such as tree trunks, to absorb the cooler temperature of the shaded area. This self-shading behavior helps them maintain a steady body temperature.

Sounds and Vocal Behavior

Banded Broadbills are known for their vocal calls, which they use to communicate with one another. These calls help Banded Broadbills maintain contact with their mates and offspring, and also in warning of potential predators.


Banded Broadbills are not extremely vocal and produce a few distinct vocal calls. The most common vocalization is a series of three or four whistling notes, rising in pitch, with the final note prolonged.

This call is often heard in the early morning and late afternoon.

The calls are given by both sexes and can be used to establish and maintain territories, communicate distress, identify their mates or offspring, as well as an alarm to warn of potential predators.

Banded Broadbills are known to have a high-pitched, musical voice that can be heard throughout the forest they inhabit.


Banded Broadbills are interesting birds that inhabit the dense forests of Southeast Asia. They are primarily insectivores, but also supplement their diet with fruits and berries.

Their hunting style is active and opportunistic, with pairs and small groups coordinated to search for prey. These birds have adapted several ways of regulating temperature and using vocalization to communicate with one another.

Understanding their diet, foraging habits, vocal behavior, and adaptations to their environment can help researchers and bird enthusiasts better appreciate and protect these beautiful birds. Banded Broadbills, or Eurylaimus javanicus, are strikingly colorful passerine birds that inhabit Southeast Asian forest ecosystems.

These birds are notable for their foraging habits, vocalizations, and breeding behavior. In this article, we will explore the behavior, breeding patterns, and demography and population dynamics of the Banded Broadbill.



Banded Broadbills exhibit short and direct flight patterns when foraging for insects, but they are also adept at climbing through the dense foliage to reach their food sources. Banded Broadbills are agile, and they can move quickly through the dense underbrush, using their feet to grip onto vines and tree trunks.

Self Maintenance

Banded Broadbills engage in preening and other self-maintenance behaviors to keep their feathers clean and free of debris. Preening behavior is vital for bird survival, as it helps keep feathers in good condition and reduces the risk of feather loss and damage.

Agonistic Behavior

Banded Broadbills are territorial birds that engage in agonistic behavior to defend their territory. They will typically engage in aggressive displays and vocalizations towards intruders to warn them off.

These displays may include wing-flapping and other aggressive posturing.

Sexual Behavior

Banded Broadbills are monogamous birds, and pairs mate for life. The breeding season is typically between April and August, and the pair is territorial during this time, defending the area around their nest.


Banded Broadbills nest in tree cavities, and the female will lay 2-3 eggs. She incubates the eggs while the male feeds her and helps to incubate the eggs.

Incubation takes between 11 and 16 days, and after hatching, both parents feed the chicks.

The chicks fledge after about 17-23 days, and they are dependent on their parents for food for several weeks after fledging.

The family unit remains together until late in the

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