Bird Genus Cissa

The bird genus Cissa consists of relatively short-tailed magpies – sometimes referred to as hunting cissas.

The members of this genus are found in the forests of tropical and subtropical southeast Asia and adjacent regions.

Recognized Species and Ranges

  • Green Magpie (Cissa chinensis) – Occurs from the lower Himalayas in north eastern India in a broad south easterly band down into central China, Malaysia, Sumatra and northwestern Borneo in evergreen forest (including bamboo forest), clearings and scrub.
  • Yellow-breasted Magpie (Cissa hypoleuca) – Native to China and south east Asia.
  • Short-tailed Magpie (Cissa thalassina) – Endemic to montane forests on the southeast Asian islands of Borneo and Java.

Yellow-breasted Magpie (Cissa hypoleuca concolor)


These birds resemble each other; they have bright red bills, a mostly green plumage, black face masks and rufous wings.

Due to excess exposure to sunlight (and, possibly, a low-carotenoid diet), they often appear rather turquoise (instead of green) in captivity.

Diet / Feeding

These carnivorous magpies mainly feed on arthropods and small vertebrates.

Green Magpie

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