Afghan Babbler
Afghan Babbler (Juveniles)
Afghan Babbler
Afghan Babbler

Observations, notes, photos

Afghan Babbler at Abdaly Farms, Sept. 2012. Thanks to Pekka Fagel who took us to the place!

Scientific Name 
Turdoides caudata huttoni
Arabic Name 
الثرثار الأفغاني
23.0 cm
Least Concern
Kuwait Specialty


Uncommon resident; breeds in Kuwait. Has recently established a small population initially at Abdaly Farms near the Iraq border since about 2007. This is one of the only known sites in Kuwait to observe this rare regional specialty. The species is one of the most sought-after local specialties in Kuwait since it is found in very few accessible countries in the extreme eastern part of the Western Palearctic.
Where in Kuwait 
It is more commonly found in the north of the country in and around the Abdaly Farms where there is a small breeding population. It has also been recorded singly at Jahra Pools Reserve and the Sulaibikhat Reserve. In September 2012 recently fledged young were observed at Abdaly, so there is evidence that the species maintains two broods.
In the world 
It has a large range with a presumed stable population. Several distinct populations are recognized as subspecies and the populations to the west of the Indus river system are sometimes treated as a separate species, the Afghan Babbler (Turdoides huttoni). The populations of the Middle East that are treated as a separate species have a heavier bill and dark streaks on the breast and sides. They are found in small parties of six to twenty. They are vociferous, moving on the ground often with members keeping watch from the tops of bushes. They forage through the undergrowth hopping on the ground and creeping like rodents.
Local threats 
Habitat loss and degradation; perhaps human disturbance (potentially predation by cats for example may be a problem, but this has never been researched).