Family Vangas and allies (Vangidae)

Least Concern

African Shrike-flycatcher (Megabyas flammulatus)


French: Bias écorcheur German: Schnäppervanga Spanish: Bias llameante
Other common names: Red-eyed Shrike-flycatcher

Megabyas flammulata

J. P. Verreaux and J. B. É. Verreaux

, 1855,

“rivière d’Angers” = River Muni, Gabon


Proposed race carolathi (Angola) included in aequatorialis. Two subspecies recognized.

Subspecies and Distribution
  • M. f. flammulatus J. P. Verreaux & J. B. É. Verreaux, 1855 – forests from Guinea and Sierra Leone E, including Bioko and C Nigeria (Jos Plateau), to W DRCongo.
  • M. f. aequatorialis F. J. Jackson, 1904 – forests of C DRCongo, N Angola and Uganda, and very locally S South Sudan (Bengangai), NW Tanzania (Minziro Forest), and W Kenya (Kakamega and Nandi Forests); disjunctly S DRCongo (Kasaji, in Katanga) and neighbouring NW Zambia (Mwinilunga district).
  • Descriptive notes

    16 cm; 22–34 g. Thickset but upright flycatcher-like bird with dark broad, hooked bill. Male nominate race is glossy blue-black above, with pure white rump and... read more


    Call a musical “chuick” or disyllabic “chuick-chuick”, also high-pitched... read more


    Forest, but habitat quite variable: recorded as primary forest, secondary forest, edges of... read more

    Food and feeding

    Diet includes insects of various orders: beetles (Coleoptera), orthopterans and lepidopterans recorded, mainly in size range 15–25 mm... read more


    Breeds in Mar in Guinea, Liberia and Ghana, Dec–May in Ivory Coast, May in Cameroon, Jan in Gabon, Mar in Angola; in DR Congo, Apr in... read more


    Probably an intra-tropical migrant: recorded only in Nov–Mar in NE Gabon, and thought to be a... read more

    Status and conservation

    Not globally threatened. Locally not uncommon in W Africa, where present in Taï Forest, Azagny and Marahoué National Parks, in Ivory Coast, and recorded in Nisram... read more

    Recommended citation

    Louette, M. (2019). African Shrike-flycatcher (Megabyas flammulatus). In: del Hoyo, J., Elliott, A., Sargatal, J., Christie, D.A. & de Juana, E. (eds.). Handbook of the Birds of the World Alive. Lynx Edicions, Barcelona. (retrieved from on 23 September 2019).