Sri Lanka Blue Magpie

Urocissa ornata

The Sri Lanka blue magpie or Ceylon magpie is a member of the crow family living in the hill forests of Sri Lanka, where it is endemic.

This is a species of a dense wet evergreen temperate rain forest. It is declining due to loss of this habitat. Sri Lanka Blue Magpie is usually found in small groups of up to six or seven birds. It is largely carnivorous, eating small frogs, lizards, insects and other invertebrates, but will eat fruit.

The cup-shaped stick nest is in a tree or shrub and there are usually 3–5 eggs laid. The eggs are white heavily spotted with brown. Both sexes build the nest and feed the young with only the female incubating them.

The Sri Lanka blue magpie is about the same size as the European magpie at 42–47 cm. The adults are blue with chestnut head and wings, and a long white-tipped tail. The legs and bill are red. The young bird is a duller version of the adult.

The Sri Lanka blue magpie has a variety of calls including mimicry, a loud chink-chink and a rasping krak-krak-krak-krak.

Related Articles

Dull-blue Flycatcher
The dull-blue flycatcher (Eumyias sordida) is a small passerine bird in the flycatcher family, Muscicapidae. This species is an endemic resident breeder in the hills of central Sri Lanka. The dull-blue…
Green-billed Coucal
The green-billed coucal is a member of the cuckoo order of birds, the Cuculiformes, which also includes the roadrunners, the anis, and the hoatzin. It is endemic to Sri Lanka. The green-billed coucal…
Stay connected on
Wildlife Sri Lanka

Our mission is to conserve and restore natural ecosystems, and their habitats for the benefit of humanity and the earth's biological diversity.