White-bellied Pitohui Pseudorectes incertus


Justification of Red List category
Although this species has a small range, it does not approach the thresholds for Vulnerable under the range size criterion (Extent of Occurrence <20,000 km2 combined with a declining or fluctuating range size, habitat extent/quality, or population size and a small number of locations or severe fragmentation). The population trend is thought to be stable and hence it does not meet or approach the thresholds for Vulnerable under the population trend criterion (>30% decline over ten years or three generations). The population size has not been quantified and the species therefore does not approach the thresholds for Vulnerable under the population size criterion (<10,000 mature individuals with a continuing decline estimated to be >10% in ten years or three generations, or with a specified population structure). For these reasons the species is evaluated as Least Concern.

Population justification
The population size of this species has not been quantified, but it is described as locally fairly common to common in the two known localities (P. Gregory in litt. 1994, K. D. Bishop in litt. 1996, Eastwood 1998, B. Whitney in litt. 2000, Beehler and Pratt 2016).

Trend justification
The species is common in the known localities and its habitat is not thought to be under threat (Beehler and Pratt 2016); thus the population is suspected to be stable.

Distribution and population

This species is known from two tiny areas of New Guinea: about 90 km up the Lorentz River in Papua, Indonesia, and 320 km to the east, between Kiunga and the Palmer Junction on the Fly River, Papua New Guinea (Diamond and Raga 1978, Beehler et al. 1986, Coates 1990, Beehler and Pratt 2016). It may prove to be widespread across the northern Trans-Fly region since studies in its habitat have been restricted to these two locations (Diamond and Raga 1978).


It occurs in seasonally flooded lowland forest, usually with a broken canopy and open middle storey, on flat subcoastal plains; in areas of high annual rainfall (more than 3,750 mm) (Beehler and Pratt 2016). It travels in groups of 3-6 individuals that are sometimes joined by other species to form mixed flocks. It feeds on insects and fruit (Pratt and Beehler 2015).


Its habitat is not thought to be under threat at present, but if it is only present in these two sites, any degradation of the habitat at either site would be detrimental the long-term survival of the species.

Conservation actions

Conservation Actions Underway
No targeted actions are known for this species.

Conservation Actions Proposed
Survey in suitable habitat between the two known occupied sites to locate additional subpopulations. Monitor habitat trends at the two known sites. Protect significant areas of forest at the two sites where it is currently known to occur.


21·5–23 cm; 75 g (Boles 2016). Pale and tan, dark eye against pale face (Pratt and Beehler 2015).


Text account compilers
Vine, J.

Bishop, K.D., Gregory, P. & Whitney, B.

Recommended citation
BirdLife International (2024) Species factsheet: Pseudorectes incertus. Downloaded from on 05/03/2024.
Recommended citation for factsheets for more than one species: BirdLife International (2024) IUCN Red List for birds. Downloaded from on 05/03/2024.