Masked laughingthrush

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Masked laughingthrush
Scientific classification Edit this classification
Domain: Eukaryota
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Class: Aves
Order: Passeriformes
Family: Leiothrichidae
Genus: Pterorhinus
P. perspicillatus
Binomial name
Pterorhinus perspicillatus
(Gmelin, JF, 1789)

Garrulax perspicillatus

Eggs, MHNT

The masked laughingthrush (Pterorhinus perspicillatus) is a species of laughingthrush found in China and Vietnam. It is often seen in small noisy flocks of seven. Its Chinese name [七姊妹 qī zǐ-mèi] means 'seven sisters'.


The masked laughingthrush was formally described in 1789 by the German naturalist Johann Friedrich Gmelin in his revised and expanded edition of Carl Linnaeus's Systema Naturae. He placed it with the thrushes in the genus Turdus and coined the binomial name Turdus perspicillatus.[2] The specific epithet perspicillatus is Modern Latin meaning "spectacled".[3] Gmelin based his description on "Le Merle de la Chine" that had been described in 1775 by the French polymath Georges-Louis Leclerc, Comte de Buffon in his Histoire Naturelle des Oiseaux.[4] A hand-coloured engraving by François-Nicolas Martinet was published to accompany Buffon's text.[5] The type locality is now restricted to Xiamen (formerly Amoy) in the province of Fujian.[6]

The masked laughingthrush was formerly placed in the genus Garrulax but following the publication of a comprehensive molecular phylogenetic study of the laughingthrushes in 2018, it was moved to the resurrected genus Pterorhinus that had been introduced by the English zoologist Robert Swinhoe in 1868.[7][8] The species is monotypic: no subspecies are recognised.[8]


  1. ^ BirdLife International (2012). "Garrulax perspicillatus". IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. 2012. Retrieved 26 November 2013.
  2. ^ Gmelin, Johann Friedrich (1789). Systema naturae per regna tria naturae : secundum classes, ordines, genera, species, cum characteribus, differentiis, synonymis, locis (in Latin). Vol. 1, Part 2 (13th ed.). Lipsiae [Leipzig]: Georg. Emanuel. Beer. p. 830.
  3. ^ Jobling, James A. (2010). The Helm Dictionary of Scientific Bird Names. London: Christopher Helm. p. 299. ISBN 978-1-4081-2501-4.
  4. ^ Buffon, Georges-Louis Leclerc de (1775). "Le Merle de la Chine". Histoire Naturelle des Oiseaux (in French). Vol. 3. Paris: De l'Imprimerie Royale. pp. 368–369.
  5. ^ Buffon, Georges-Louis Leclerc de; Martinet, François-Nicolas; Daubenton, Edme-Louis; Daubenton, Louis-Jean-Marie (1765–1783). "Merle, da la Chine". Planches Enluminées D'Histoire Naturelle. Vol. 7. Paris: De L'Imprimerie Royale. Plate 604.
  6. ^ Mayr, Ernst; Paynter, Raymond A. Jr, eds. (1964). Check-List of Birds of the World. Vol. 10. Cambridge, Massachusetts: Museum of Comparative Zoology. p. 350.
  7. ^ Cibois, A.; Gelang, M.; Alström, P.; Pasquet, E.; Fjeldså, J.; Ericson, P.G.P.; Olsson, U. (2018). "Comprehensive phylogeny of the laughingthrushes and allies (Aves, Leiothrichidae) and a proposal for a revised taxonomy". Zoologica Scripta. 47 (4): 428–440. doi:10.1111/zsc.12296. S2CID 51883434.
  8. ^ a b Gill, Frank; Donsker, David, eds. (2019). "Laughingthrushes and allies". World Bird List Version 9.1. International Ornithologists' Union. Retrieved 18 January 2019.

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