White bellbird

The loudest living bird

Ryan Kozie

White bellbird


The loudest living bird

<25% decline over the next three generations

As its name suggests, the adult male of this species is characterized by its striking all-white plumage, while females exhibit an olive-green coloration with yellowish streaks on the underparts. One of the most distinctive features of the male White Bellbird is its extensible fleshy black wattle, which resembles a worm-like appendage and springs from the base of the bill.

These unique birds inhabit high elevations within tall forests, where they can be found across a wide range, from Para to French Guiana, Venezuela, Trinidad, and Tobago. Their preferred diet consists primarily of fruits, which they consume using their specialized short, broad-based bills. This adaptation allows them to efficiently swallow whole fruits, contributing to their role as important seed dispersers within their ecosystems.

The vocalizations of the White Bellbird are among the most remarkable in the avian world. Their bell-like calls, characterized by a distinctive two-note pattern, serve primarily as advertising calls to establish territory and attract mates. During the breeding season, males engage in elaborate courtship displays, singing in the highest pitch, reaching up to an astonishing 125 dB, which is one of the loudest bird calls recorded. This impressive vocal performance is further amplified when the female joins the male on the perch, resulting in a cacophony of sound that reverberates through the forest canopy.

The unique combination of striking plumage, specialized feeding behavior, and extraordinary vocal abilities makes the White Bellbird a captivating subject of study for ornithologists and bird enthusiasts alike. Understanding the ecological role and behavioral adaptations of this species is crucial for conservation efforts aimed at preserving its natural habitat and ensuring its continued survival in the wild.


Population est.
French Guiana
Trinidad & Tobago

Did you know?

  • The bird is as small as a dove, weighing up to 250g (9 oz), but is the loudest known bird. This is maybe because of well-defined abdominal muscles!

Anything we've missed?

Help us improve this page by suggesting edits. Glory never dies!

Suggest an edit

Get to know me

Terrestrial / Aquatic

Altricial / Precocial

Polygamous / Monogamous

Dimorphic (size) / Monomorphic

Active: Diurnal / Nocturnal

Social behavior: Solitary / Pack / Herd

Diet: Carnivore / Herbivore / Omnivore / Piscivorous / Insectivore

Migratory: Yes / No

Domesticated: Yes / No

Dangerous: Yes / No