Grey-hooded Warbler

Grey-hooded Warbler Phylloscopus xanthoschistos is a Himalayan species, present in southern Tibet, with jerdoni in Shigatse Prefecture and flavogularis in Nyingchi Prefecture and both ssp. presumably present in Shannan Prefecture. HABITAT & BEHAVIOR Broadleaf and mixed broadleaf-conifer montane forests, secondary as well as primary, from 950–2750 m (3,120–9,020 ft.). Forages restlessly, constantly flashing tail and flicking wings. Mainly in mid-canopy, less often in high canopy and low bushes; rarely descends to ground. Sometimes hovers like sunbird. ID & COMPARISON Conspicuous yellow, grey, and green warbler, with blackish-grey eye-stripe, indistinct and broken white eye-ring, greyish-white supercilium, and faint pale-grey coronal stripe. Grey hood (to mantle and back) contrasts with bright yellowish-green rest of upperparts (including wings) and lemon-yellow underparts; brownish-grey tail with yellowish-green fringing, outer tail feathers largely white (tail may appear white from below). Juvenile duller. Feet orange-brown or pinkish-grey; bill blackish above, yellow-orange below. Race flavogularis is darker than jerdoni and has olive wash to flanks. Quite similar golden-spectacled (“Seicercus”) warblers have yellow eye-ring and black lateral crown stripes but lack dark eye-stripe and whitish supercilium. Yellow-bellied Warbler Abroscopus superciliaris has olive-green nape, mantle, and back, greyish-white throat, and stronger and darker bill and lacks coronal stripe and extensive white on outer tail. VOICE Song, often introduced by psit call notes, a brief, high-pitched warble, constantly repeated, with short pauses in between. Common call a three-syllable psit-su-it, with middle note lower-pitched. — Craig Brelsford

THE LEAF WARBLERS OF CHINA has research on most members of Phylloscopus in China. Click any link below:

Wood Warbler Phylloscopus sibilatrix
Buff-barred Warbler P. pulcher
Ashy-throated Warbler P. maculipennis
Hume’s Leaf Warbler P. humei
Yellow-browed Warbler P. inornatus
Chinese Leaf Warbler P. yunnanensis
Lemon-rumped Warbler P. chloronotus
Sichuan Leaf Warbler P. forresti
Gansu Leaf Warbler P. kansuensis
Pallas’s Leaf Warbler P. proregulus
Yellow-streaked Warbler P. armandii
Radde’s Warbler P. schwarzi
Sulphur-bellied Warbler P. griseolus
Tickell’s Leaf Warbler P. affinis
Smoky Warbler P. fuligiventer
Dusky Warbler P. fuscatus
Buff-throated Warbler P. subaffinis
Willow Warbler P. trochilus
Mountain Chiffchaff P. sindianus
Common Chiffchaff P. collybita
Eastern Crowned Warbler P. coronatus
Ijima’s Leaf Warbler P. ijimae
White-spectacled Warbler P. intermedius
Grey-cheeked Warbler P. poliogenys
Green-crowned Warbler P. burkii
Grey-crowned Warbler P. tephrocephalus
Whistler’s Warbler P. whistleri
Bianchi’s Warbler P. valentini
Alström’s Warbler P. soror
Martens’s Warbler P. omeiensis
Two-barred Warbler P. plumbeitarsus
Greenish Warbler P. trochiloides
Emei Leaf Warbler P. emeiensis
Large-billed Leaf Warbler P. magnirostris
Sakhalin Leaf Warbler P. borealoides
Pale-legged Leaf Warbler P. tenellipes
Japanese Leaf Warbler P. xanthodryas
Kamchatka Leaf Warbler P. examinandus
Arctic Warbler P. borealis
Chestnut-crowned Warbler P. castaniceps
Limestone Leaf Warbler P. calciatilis
Sulphur-breasted Warbler P. ricketti
Yellow-vented Warbler P. cantator
Blyth’s Leaf Warbler P. reguloides
Claudia’s Leaf Warbler P. claudiae
Hartert’s Leaf Warbler P. goodsoni
Kloss’s Leaf Warbler P. ogilviegranti
Hainan Leaf Warbler P. hainanus
Davison’s Leaf Warbler P. davisoni
Grey-hooded Warbler P. xanthoschistos


Use Per Alström’s 40-page presentation on the leaf warblers of China. The document is available in PDF and jpeg:

Presentation on the Identification of Leaf Warblers in China, by Per Alström (PDF version)

Presentation on the Identification of Leaf Warblers in China, by Per Alström (zip folder containing jpegs that can be synced like photos to one’s smartphone)

See also:

Complete species-level phylogeny of the leaf warbler (Aves: Phylloscopidae) radiation, by Per Alström et al.


Daniel Bengtsson served as chief ornithological consultant for Craig Brelsford’s Photographic Field Guide to the Birds of China, from which this species description is drawn.

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