Unsorted Wild Birds

Yellow-crowned Gonolek or Common Gonolek

The Yellow-crowned Gonoleks (Laniarius barbarus), also known as the Common Gonolek, is a medium-sized passerine bird in the bushshrike family.

Distribution / Range:

It is a common resident breeding bird in equatorial Africa from Senegal and the Democratic Republic of Congo east to Ethiopia.

It frequents dense undergrowth in forests and other wooded habitats. It is not as extremely shy as some other bushshrikes, and can sometimes be seen on watered hotel lawns. The nest is a cup structure in a bush or tree into which two eggs are laid.


The Yellow-crowned Gonoleks is 22 cm long with a long tail and short wings.

The adult is a stunning bird, although easily overlooked as it lurks in undergrowth. It has solidly black upperparts apart from its golden crown, and scarlet underparts other than a buff-yellow undertail. The legs are dark.

Males and females look alike, but juveniles are paler and duller.

Calls / Vocalization:

This species has duetted calls, with a fluted too-lioo overlapped by a rattling ch-chacha.

Diet / Feeding:

The Yellow-crowned Gonolek feeds on insects located in bushes or on the ground.


Gordon Ramel

Gordon is an ecologist with two degrees from Exeter University. He's also a teacher, a poet and the owner of 1,152 books. Oh - and he wrote this website.

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