Bushshrikes are small to medium-sized passerines, with short, rounded wings and strong legs and feet. Plumage is typically black, grey, and brown, with some yellow and green. Some bush shrikes have red undersides or red throat-patches.

Habitat and Distribution

This species is found in the Arabian peninsula and most of Africa in scrub, open woodland, semi-desert and cultivation.


It is similar in habits to the shrikes, hunting insects and other small prey from a perch in a bush, although it sits less conspicuously than true shrikes.


Black-crowned tchagra lays two or three heavily marked white eggs in a cup nest in a tree or bush. Both sexes, but mainly the female, incubate for 12?15 days to hatching; the chicks fledge after another 15 days.

Calls and Songs

Black-crowned tchagra has a descending whistling song, chee-chee chee cheroo cheroo, and can be readily tempted into sight by imitating this call, presumably because the bird is concerned that there is an intruder in its territory. The male also has a switchback display flight.