Black-headed Gonolek

(Laniarius erythrogaster)


Black-headed Gonoleks pairs sing duets. The male gives a clear, bell-like call, and the female will answer with a grating rasp.

Black-headed gonoleks are roughly the size of an American robin and are primarily black with a bright red throat and chest.  They belong to a group of birds known as bush-shrikes.  Bush-shrikes may look like a typical songbird, but are actually small, active predators known to hunt insects and other prey.  They are also known for their loud calls.  This species has a particular call in which the male makes one clear note and the female responds with a raspy call almost immediately.  This happens so quickly that it often sounds like only one bird is calling.   


Central Africa


Dry savanna, subtropical/tropical shrubland, trees bordering lakes and streams.


Insects, insect larvae, and occasionally small vertebrates.


Black-headed gonoleks build a cup-shaped nest in a tree and lay up to 4 eggs per clutch.


Not Under Threat (Least Concern)

At the Aviary

Visit Captain Morgan the Black-headed Gonolek in the Tropical Forest.